US Treasury imposes new sanctions on Russia including family of Putin’s spokesman

Viktor Vekselberg’s private jet and yacht branded ‘blocked property’ by White House

Graeme Massie
Los Angeles
Friday 11 March 2022 23:28 GMT
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Biden revokes ‘Most Favoured Nation’ trade status for Russia

The United States has imposed a fresh round of sanctions on high-ranking Russian officials and oligarchs, including the family of Vladimir Putin’s spokesman.

The US Treasury announced the new sanctions, which include three immediate family members of Dmitry Peskov, the spokesperson of the Kremlin, on Friday.

It also put new sanctions on members of the management board of VTB, the Russian bank it sanctioned last month, and 12 Russian lawmakers.

The US Treasury also identified a $90m private jet and a yacht owned by Viktor Vekselberg, a previously sanctioned Russian businessman, as “blocked property.”

The move came as the US and its Western allies attempt to ramp; up the pressure on those people around Vladimir Putin as he continues his unprovoked assault on Ukraine.

The Treasury has accused those people sanctioned as supporting the Kremlin’s brutal attack on its neighbour.

A Russian army tank moves through a street on the outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, Friday, March 11, 2022
A Russian army tank moves through a street on the outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, Friday, March 11, 2022 (AP)

“Treasury continues to hold Russian officials to account for enabling Putin’s unjustified and unprovoked war,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.

“Today’s actions also further isolates the severely damaged Russian economy by prohibiting trade in products that are key to the economic and financial interests of all Russian elites.”

Vekselberg’s P4-MIS jet, valued at approximately $90 million
Vekselberg’s P4-MIS jet, valued at approximately $90 million (US Treasury)

Since Russian troops attacked Ukraine on 24 February, the Biden administration has imposed sanctions on large Russian banks, the Russian central bank and a string of individuals, including Mr Putin and foreign minister Sergei Lavrov.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden announced on Friday that he and the G7 were taking steps to revoke Russia’s Permanent Normalised Trade Relations status as part of another round of actions to punish Russia.

“As Putin continues his merciless assault, the United States and our allies and partners continue to work in lockstep to ramp up the economic pressures on Putin and to further isolate Russia on the global stage,” said Mr Biden, who delivered his remarks from the White House’s Roosevelt Room.

Mr Biden said he was joining other allies, including the G7 countries of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom, plus Nato and the European Union, in revoking Russia’s Most Favoured Trade status.

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