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U.S. to sanction over 300 Russian elites and block Russian central bank gold

U.S. President Joe Biden announces new actions against Russia for its war in Ukraine, during remarks in the Roosevelt Room at the White House in Washington, U.S., March 8, 2022.
Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

The United States plans to sanction approximately 400 Russian individuals and entities, including more than 300 lawmakers from the Russian lower house of parliament, the Duma and Russian elites, a senior Biden administration official said Thursday.

As Russia’s unprovoked and increasingly brutal invasion of Ukraine enters its second month Thursday, the G-7 group of major economies and the European Union will also announce new measures to crack down on Russian efforts to evade current sanctions, including those on its central bank.

The EU and G-7 will also inform international organizations that from this point forward, they are no longer to operate within Russia under “business as usual” standards, said the official, who requested anonymity in order to preview announcements that had not yet been made public.

“Our purpose here is to methodically remove the benefits and privileges Russia once enjoyed as a participant in the international economic order,” said the official.

President Joe Biden will announce the measures during his first of three speeches planned Thursday before NATO.

Biden will also announce a new set of American efforts to aid the Ukrainian people, said the senior White House aide.

The U.S. is also “prepared to provide more than $1 billion in new funding towards humanitarian assistance for those affected by Russia’s war in Ukraine and its severe impacts around the world,” said the official, without detailing how or when the money would be spent.

Biden will also announce a new commitment of funds to help protect global food security, which has been thrown into chaos by Russia’s invasion because both Moscow and Kyiv are some of the world’s largest suppliers of grain.

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.

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