US slaps sanctions on Russia over incorporation of Ukrainian regions

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday proclaimed the biggest annexation in Europe since World War Two, declaring Russian rule over 15 per cent of Ukraine



By Reuters

Published: Fri 30 Sep 2022, 6:56 PM

The United States on Friday imposed sweeping Russia-related sanctions on hundreds of people and companies, including members of Russia's legislature, military and central bank, in response to Moscow's declaration that it had annexed a swath of Ukraine.

The US Treasury Department said it imposed sanctions on 14 people in Russia's military-industrial complex, two leaders of the country's central bank, family members of top officials and 278 members of Russia's legislature "for enabling Russia's sham referenda and attempt to annex sovereign Ukrainian territory."

The Treasury also issued guidance warning of heightened sanctions risk to those outside Russia should they provide political or economic support to Moscow.

The United States acted after Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday proclaimed the biggest annexation in Europe since World War Two, declaring Russian rule over 15 per cent of Ukraine.

Russia declared the annexations after holding what it called referendums in occupied areas of Ukraine. Western governments and Kyiv said the votes breached international law and were coercive and non-representative.

"We will not stand by as Putin fraudulently attempts to annex parts of Ukraine," Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.

Among those targeted with sanctions by the United States on Friday was Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak and 278 members of Russia's legislature.

The US State Department also imposed visa restrictions on more than 900 people, including members of the Russian and Belarusian military and "Russia's proxies for violating Ukraine's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political independence."

In a related move, the US Commerce Department is adding 57 entities to its US export blacklist. The agency will also make clear that US restrictions on exports to Russia can apply to entities in other countries that support Russia's and Belarus' military and industrial sectors by shipping prohibited technologies and other items prohibited by the United States and the 37 countries with similar restrictions.

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