The U.S. on Thursday unveiled a fresh batch of sanctions on more than 400 Russian individuals and entities, including members of the Russian State Duma, the head of the nation’s largest financial institution and billionaire businessman Gennady Timchenko—lifting the number of entities sanctioned by the U.S. above 600, the White House said.
President Joe Biden speaks at a conference on March 14.
The Treasury on Thursday said it sanctioned 328 Duma members for supporting the Kremlin’s efforts to invade Ukraine through measures including treaties recognizing the self-proclaimed independence of areas of eastern Ukraine known as the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luansk People’s Republic.
The Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control also sanctioned 48 companies that are part of Russia’s defense-industrial base and that have produced weapons for Russia’s military, effectively cutting them off from U.S. technological and financial resources.
Among the individuals sanctioned, the office designated Herman Gef, the CEO of the nation’s largest lender, Sberbank, an enabler of the invasion due to his ties to the Russian government, pointing out the businessman and politician has been a close confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin since the 1990s.
The action, in coordination with the European Union and Group of Seven (G7) nations, also places full blocking sanctions on 17 board members of Russian financial institution Sovcombank and resanctions Russian billionaire Gennady Timchenko and his OOO Volga Group, while placing new sanctions on his wife and daughter.
Already sanctioned by the EU, Timchenko, 69, has stakes in various Russian businesses, including gas company Novatek and petrochemical producer Sibur Holding, and faced sanctions in 2014 for his close ties to Putin.
In response to concerns that Russia may be using alternative assets to evade sanctions, the Treasury also issued guidance specifying that gold-related transactions involving the Russian government are also subject to sanctions.
“The United States, with our partners and allies, is striking at the heart of Russia’s ability to finance and carry out its warfare and atrocities against Ukraine,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a Thursday statement. “The Russian State Duma continues to support Putin’s invasion, stifle the free flow of information and infringe on the basic rights of the citizens of Russia. We call on those closest to Putin to cease and condemn this cold-blooded war.”
The economic fallout since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an invasion of Ukraine on February 23 has intensified amid a growing list of sanctions targeting vast swaths of the Russian economy—including the tech, defense and energy industries, financial institutions and the nation’s wealthiest people. Additionally, a slew of businesses including oil giants British Petroleum and Shell, as well as the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, have all announced they will abandon Russian investments or operations. Experts warned the crisis has made the nation “increasingly uninvestable for global investors.” After a month-long closure, the Moscow Stock Exchange reopened to stock trading under a slew of heavy restrictions on Thursday. Russia’s benchmark stock index climbed 4% Thursday but is still down 33% this year.
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