UNITED STATES NEWS

US announces new sanctions on Russia’s weapons suppliers as Zelenskyy visits Washington

Dec 12, 2023, 9:07 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration hit hundreds of people and firms, from Russia to China to Turkey and the United Arab Emirates, with economic and diplomatic sanctions Tuesday as the U.S. targets third-country contributors that are equipping Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The latest round of sanctions landed as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is visiting Washington to make an appeal for more financial support as his nation fights off the Russian invasion that will enter its third year in February.

The financial penalties have made Russia the most sanctioned country in the world but have yet to deliver a knockout punch to Russia’s economy.

Tuesday’s sanctions package targets a multinational weapons procurement network led by Chinese national Hu Xiaoxun, his China-based private defense company Jarvis HK Co., and a network of associates that coordinate the sale of Chinese-manufactured weapons and components to Russia.

A representative from Jarvis did not immediately respond to an Associated Press request for comment.

Additionally, a group of Turkey, UAE and Maldives-based firms involved in the weapons production process are targeted for economic sanctions.

“The Kremlin has steadily turned Russia into a wartime economy, but Putin’s war machine cannot survive on domestic production alone,” said Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

“Our sanctions today continue to tighten the vise on willing third-country suppliers and networks providing Russia the inputs it desperately needs to ramp up and sustain its military-industrial base.”

Along with sanctioning gold producers and munitions shippers, the State Department is sanctioning three entities involved in the development of Russia’s Ust-Luga Liquified Natural Gas terminal, which is currently under construction, and set to be operated by a Russian majority state-owned multinational energy firm Gazprom and Russian energy firm RusGazDobych.

The U.S. and its allies “are united in our continued support of Ukraine in the face of Russia’s unprovoked, unjustified, and illegal war,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

“We will continue to use the tools at our disposal to promote accountability for Russia’s crimes in Ukraine and those who finance and support Russia’s war machine.”

The sanctions block access to U.S. property and bank accounts and prevent the targeted people and companies from doing business with Americans.

___

AP Diplomatic Writer Matthew Lee contributed to this report.

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US announces new sanctions on Russia’s weapons suppliers as Zelenskyy visits Washington