The United States has imposed sanctions on Elvira Nabiullina, the governor of the Russian central bank, as part of a new package of measures aimed at toughening the financial sanction of Moscow following its decision to annex large parts of territory in eastern Ukraine.
The decision against Nabiullina came as the Treasury Department expanded its sanctions against Russia to include several of the country’s top economic officials, in addition to individuals and lawmakers associated with the military invasion of Ukraine.
Western officials condemned Putin’s actions and insisted they would continue to support Ukraine. US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Washington would not “stand [Vladimir] Putin is fraudulently trying to annex parts of Ukraine”.
She added that the United States was “targeting key leaders in Russia’s financial architecture as part of our aggressive and coordinated efforts to hold Putin and his enablers accountable for his unprovoked invasion and limit their ability to sustain their economy.”
Separately, Antony Blinken, the US Secretary of State, issued a warning that he said was supported by other G7 leaders that the United States would “hold accountable any individual, entity or country that provides political or economic support for Russia’s illegal attempts to change the status”. of Ukrainian territory“.
He noted that there would be “increased sanctions and export control risks for entities and individuals inside or outside Russia” who supported Russian annexation.
US President Joe Biden said Putin’s actions “have no legitimacy”, adding that America would continue to rally the world against Russia’s actions, including imposing sanctions.
“I urge all members of the international community to reject Russia’s illegal annexation attempts and to stand with the people of Ukraine for as long as necessary,” he said.
The US Treasury Department explained its decision to impose sanctions on Nabiullina, saying she had been instrumental in Russia’s efforts to protect its economy in recent years from Western sanctions dating back to the invasion of Crimea in 2014.
“Directly and indirectly, Russian financial technocrats supported the Kremlin’s unprovoked war,” he said. “Today’s actions target key figures who, through their leadership positions, have personally enriched themselves while facilitating Putin’s war in Ukraine, actively undermining the territorial integrity, sovereignty and political independence of Ukraine.”
Separately, the Treasury also imposed sanctions on Olga Skorobogatova, First Deputy Governor of the Russian Central Bank, and Aleksandr Novak, Russian Deputy Prime Minister.
The US targeting of Nabiullina comes seven months after the United States and its allies imposed sanctions on dealings with the Russian central bank immediately after Moscow launched its attack on Ukraine, in a surprise move aimed at limiting the Russia’s ability to operate in the international financial system.