• Monday, December 04, 2023
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Russia – Ukraine Conflict: UK freezes more Russian accounts

Russia-Ukraine Crisis: U.K. set to ban exports of luxury goods to Russia

The United Kingdom foreign secretary has announced a full asset freeze and travel ban on seven of Russia’s wealthiest and most powerful oligarchs, whose business empires, wealth, and connections are closely linked to the Kremlin, Thursday.

Liz Truss, the secretary of state for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs of the United Kingdom, said in a statement that these oligarchs – who have a combined net worth of around £15 billion – will have their assets in the UK frozen.

“They will be barred from travelling here, and no UK citizen or company will be able to do business with them as part of the UK’s leading efforts to isolate Putin and those around him.”

Those newly-sanctioned by the UK include Roman Abramovich, owner of Chelsea Football Club, worth more than £9 billion; industrialist Oleg Deripaska worth £2 billion, and Rosneft CEO Igor Sechin.

Another group of Russia-based oligarchs close to Putin have also been placed under sanction.

Those hit by the new sanctions are Andrey Kostin, Chairman of VTB bank; Alexei Miller, CEO of energy company Gazprom; Nikolai Tokarev, president of the Russian state-owned pipeline company Transneft; and Dmitri Lebedev, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Bank Rossiya.

Read also: Russia -Ukraine war stoking Nigerians rising living costs

Truss, in agreement with the prime minister, said the sanctions show once again that oligarchs and kleptocrats have no place in our economy or society. And with their close links to Putin, they are complicit in his aggression.

“Our support for Ukraine will not waver. We will not stop in this mission to ramp up the pressure on the Putin regime and choke off funds to his brutal war machine,” the statement read.

Boris Johnson, UK’s Prime Minister, said that there can be no safe havens for those who have supported Putin’s vicious assault on Ukraine.

“Today’s sanctions are the latest step in the UK’s unwavering support for the Ukrainian people,” Johnson added. “We will be ruthless in pursuing those who enable the killing of civilians, destruction of hospitals, and illegal occupation of sovereign allies.”

These sanctions are the latest step in the United Kingdom’s response to Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, designed to ensure his failure by crippling Russia’s economy, which supports his war machine.