US implements G7 sanctions targeting Russian military, gold

Washington announced steps Tuesday to implement the new sanctions on Russia as agreed by G7 leaders, targeting Moscow’s defense industry, raising tariffs and banning gold imports from the country.

The latest moves “strike at the heart of Russia’s ability to develop and deploy weapons and technology used for Vladimir Putin’s brutal war of aggression against Ukraine,” the US Treasury Department said in a statement.

The sanctions target Rostec, Russia’s largest defense conglomerate, and other firms critical to the defense industry, as well as military units and officers implicated in human rights abuses in Ukraine, Treasury said.

“We once again reaffirm our commitment to working alongside our partners and allies to impose additional severe sanctions in response to Russia’s war against Ukraine,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said.

“Broad multilateral commitments and actions by G7 members this week further cut off the Russian Federation’s access to technology that is critical to their military,” she said, which will “degrade Putin’s capabilities and further impede his war against Ukraine.”

The moves blacklist 70 entities and 29 individuals, which freezes any US-held assets and prohibits them from doing business with or conducting financial transactions with US institutions.

United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) is on the list as Washington aims to “weaken Russia’s ability to continue its aerial assault on Ukraine,” the statement said.

In addition, the United States is seeking to crack down on Russians trying to skirt existing sanctions by “covertly” acquiring US, Japanese and European defense components.

Also as part of the G7-agreed sanctions, the United States banned imports of gold from Russia, the country’s biggest non-energy export, Treasury said. But the move excludes gold already held outside of Russia.

The suite of US actions included visa restrictions on more than 500 military officers and individuals, including Halyna Danylchenko, “the illegitimate Russia-installed ‘mayor’ of Melitopol” in southeastern Ukraine, and Rostec board members, the State Department said.

The department designated a company from Uzbekistan that provides electronic components to Russia, which “underscores the risks of doing business with sanctioned Russian entities or individuals,” Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said in a statement.

Washington also is increasing tariffs on more than 570 groups of Russian products worth approximately $2.3 billion.

“These measures are carefully calibrated to impose costs on Russia, while minimizing costs to US consumers,” Blinken said. — Agence France-Presse