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US slams Russia with fresh sanctions as Putin annexes parts of Ukraine

( NYPost )

The Biden administration hit the Kremlin with a new round of sanctions Friday, hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the annexation of four Ukrainian provinces in a rambling, ranting address.

The sanctions sought to impose “swift and severe costs” on Moscow for its “fraudulent and unlawful annexation” of Ukrainian territory, the White House said.

“Make no mistake: these actions have no legitimacy,” President Biden said of Russia’s land grab. “The United States will always honor Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.”

“In response to Russia’s phony claims of annexation, the United States, together with our Allies and partners, are announcing new sanctions today,” Biden continued. “These sanctions will impose costs on individuals and entities — inside and outside of Russia — that provide political or economic support to illegal attempts to change the status of Ukrainian territory.”

The sanctions target Russian government and military officials, as well as military officials in neighboring Belarus.

The punishment also affects 14 international firms identified as being part of the Russian military’s supply chain.

The measures took aim at the Russian economy, sanctioning Elvira Sakhipzadovna Nabiullina, the head of Russia’s central bank — as well as her deputy, longtime Putin advisor Olga Nikolaevna Skorobogatova.

The US Treasury and State Departments also announced sanctions on relatives of members of Russia’s security council, including the wife and adult children of Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu — who was directly affected by earlier rounds of sanctions.

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