May 28, 2023


The United States imposed sanctions Wednesday on a number of individuals and entities. These included a Russian commercial bank, and a virtual currency mining business. This was in an attempt to punish Moscow for evading existing sanctions due to Russia’s invasion and occupation of Ukraine.

According to the U.S. Treasury Department, it has designated for the first-time a virtual currency mining business. This was in addition to more than 40 individuals and entities headed by Konstantin Malofeyev, a U.S.-designated Russian Oligarch.

“Treasury will target those who attempt, evade or aid the evasion U.S. sanctions on Russia,” Brian Nelson, Treasury’s under secretary for terrorist and financial intelligence, stated in a statement.

Washington’s Russian Embassy did not respond immediately to our request for comment.

Since the February 24th invasion of Ukraine, the United States and its allies have imposed a number of sanctions against Moscow. This includes targeting Russia’s biggest lenders and Putin himself.

Wednesday’s action targets Russia’s virtual currency mine industry, reportedly third largest in the globe. It sanctions the holding company of BitRiver, a Moscow-based bitcoin miner, as well as 10 Russian-based subsidiaries.

The Treasury also placed sanctions on Transkapitalbank, the Russian commercial bank, which claimed to serve several banks in Asia including China and the Middle East. It suggested that they could evade international sanctions.

It was also named for its subsidiary, Investtradebank.

Wednesday’s action will freeze any assets U.S. of the designated persons and prohibit Americans from dealing with them.

Washington issued Transkapitalbank two general licenses in addition to the sanctions. These allowed the bank to cease operations until May 20, and certain transactions destined or originating out of Afghanistan until October 20. This was “in support” of the efforts to address the humanitarian crises.

Additional sanctions were also placed on Russian oligarch Malofeyev by the United States. The U.S. authorities long have accused Malofeyev of being one main source of funding for Russians financing separatism in Crimea. In 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea, he was the first to be designated by the Obama administration.

The U.S. Justice Department indicted Malofeyev earlier this month for violating sanctions imposed against Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.

Nelson stated that the United States would work with international partners to ensure that sanctions imposed by the United States do not degrade the Kremlin’s power to project power or fund its invasion.

In an effort to encourage accountability for human rights violations and abuses, the U.S. State Department has imposed visa restrictions on more than 600 individuals, U.S. Secretary Antony Blinken stated in a statement. They will not be allowed to travel to the United States.

Along with 17 other Belarusian officials, three Russian officials were also subject to visa restrictions for “gross violation of human rights”.

Blinken stated that “we will use every tool we have to promote accountability for human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law in Ukraine.”


Source link

Leave a Reply