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President Joe Biden says the US is sanctioning Russian oligarchs in retaliation for action against Ukraine, and warns of further measures.
In a statement from the White House, Biden said the measures were only the 'first tranche' and he would 'escalate sanctions if Russia escalates'.
He said: “We’re implementing full blocking sanctions on two large Russian financial institutions, VEB and their military bank.
“We’re implementing comprehensive sanctions on Russian sovereign debt. That means we’ve cut off Russia’s government from Western financing, it can no longer raise money from the West and cannot trade in its new debt on our markets or European markets either.”
He said: “Starting tomorrow and continuing in the days ahead we will also impose sanctions on Russia’s elites and their family members. They share in the corrupt gains of the Kremlin policies and should share in the pain as well.”
Biden said the US had worked with Germany in the halting of Nordstream 2, and he added: “As Russia contemplates its next move, we have our next move prepared as well. Russia will pay an even steeper price if it continues its aggression, including additional sanctions.”
The US isn’t the only country that has announced sanctions against Russia.
Twenty-seven European Union members nations have unanimously agreed on an initial set of sanctions targeting Russian officials over their actions in Ukraine, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drianance said.
EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said the package, approved on Tuesday, 'will hurt Russia, and it will hurt a lot'.
Borrell said the sanctions would affect members of Russia’s lower house of parliament and other individuals involved in approving the deployment of Russian troops to separatist-held regions of eastern Ukraine.
He says the package will also affect Russia’s financing of policies linked to Ukraine by limiting access to EU financial markets.
Meanwhile, Britain is also sanctioning three billionaire allies of Putin and five Russian banks.
Earlier today, Boris Johnson announced a 'first barrage' of punitive measures in response to the 'renewed invasion' of Ukraine.
The three oligarchs, who Johnson said are ‘very close to the Putin regime’, are Gennady Timchenko, Boris Rotenberg and his brother Igor Rotenberg.
Speaking about his decision, Johnson told UK Parliament: "Any assets they hold in the UK will be frozen, the individuals concerned will be banned from travelling here, and we will prohibit all UK individuals and entities from having any dealings with them."
He also sanctioned five banks: Rossiya, IS Bank, General Bank, Promsvyazbank and the Black Sea Bank.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
Topics: US News
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