In response to Russia's annexation of four occupied Ukrainian territories, the US is imposing further sanctions on Russia. The punitive measures are aimed, among other things, at other Russian government officials, their family members and members of the military, as the US government announced on Friday in Washington. Defense procurement networks, including international suppliers, are also affected.
The long list of people the Americans are targeting in this move includes Russia's central bank governor Elvira Nabiullina, other members of parliament, as well as family members of Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin and the ex-Kremlin chief Dmitry Medvedev, who is now deputy chief of the Russian Security Council.
US President Joe Biden declared: "The United States condemns today's fraudulent attempt by Russia to annex sovereign Ukrainian territory." Russia is violating international law, trampling on the United Nations Charter and showing its contempt for peaceful nations everywhere. "These actions are illegal," Biden said.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said: "The United States unequivocally rejects Russia's fraudulent attempt to alter Ukraine's internationally recognized borders." This is a "clear violation of international law and the Charter of the United Nations".
Russian President Vladimir Putin had previously sealed the annexation of the four areas in Ukraine that the majority of his troops occupied. He signed the relevant documents at a ceremony in the Kremlin. The occupation chiefs of the four regions, Denis Pushilin (Donetsk), Leonid Pasechnik (Luhansk), Vladimir Saldo (Kherson) and Yevgeny Balitsky (Zaporizhia), also signed the agreements. The annexation is not recognized internationally.
In response to Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine, the US and its international partners had already imposed unprecedented sanctions on Russia in recent months.