The US issues sanctions against 13 individuals, including a former Russian gymnast and alleged Putin partner

The United States issued new sanctions against Moscow in response to the war in Ukraine that include more than 30 entities and 13 individualsincluding people from the innermost circle of the Kremlin, such as the former gymnast Alina Kabayevawhom many point to as a lover of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“The Treasury Department will use every tool at our disposal to ensure that Russian elites and Kremlin enablers be held accountable for their complicity in a war that has cost countless livesTreasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.

The new sanctions were extended to Andrei Guryev, the founder and former vice president of PhosAgro, a leading Russian chemical company. The businessman’s Cayman Islands-flagged yacht, the ‘Alfa Nero’ – valued at $120 million – is on the new list as blocked property. Guryev has already been sanctioned by the UK.

Among other names, there is also Viktor Rashnikov, majority shareholder of one of the largest steel producers of the world, MMK, as well as two subsidiaries. This businessman has previously been sanctioned by Australia, Canada, the EU, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Also, from the elite closest to Putin, there is Alina Kabaeva, Olympic champion in Athens 2004 and the current head of the National Media Group; as well as Natalia Valerievna Popova, first deputy director of the Innopraktika Non-State Development Institute, a technology company based in Russia.

The administration of President Joe Biden specified that the sanctions extend to the financial institution Joint Stock Company Promising Industrial and Infrastructure Technologies “for trying to circumvent previous sanctions imposed on the Russian Direct Investment Fund.”

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The State Department stated that Washington added Russian businessmen to that list as the tycoon Dimitri Aleksandrovich Pumpianskii, former president of OAO TMK, a Russian world manufacturer of steel tubes; Andrei Igorevich Melnichenko, Chairman of the Mining Commission of the Bureau of the Board of Directors of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, and Alexander Anatolevich Ponomarenko.

Also, the Department designated 24 Russian defense- and technology-related entitiesas well as “four individuals and one entity operating illegitimately on the territory of Ukraine in collaboration with Russia.”

“The State Department is taking steps to place visa restrictions on individuals in connection with Russia’s war in Ukraine. This includes 893 officials of the Russian Federationsuch as members of the Federation Council and military members, for threatening or violating the sovereignty, territorial integrity or political independence of Ukraine,” he explained in a statement.

Said list, according to the United States, includes 31 foreign government officials that they acted to “support Russia’s alleged annexation of the Crimean region of Ukraine” and thereby “threatened or violated Ukraine’s sovereignty.” (Europe Press)

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