Australia slaps sanctions on 110 citizens of Russia, LPR, DPR

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Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne speaks with the media as she arrives for a meeting of NATO foreign ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Thursday, April 7, 2022. NATO foreign ministers are meeting to discuss how to bolster their support to Ukraine, including by supplying weapons to the conflict-torn country, without being drawn into a wider war with Russia. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys)

Australia’s government introduced targeted economic sanctions against 110 citizens of Russia, the LPR and DPR over the situation in Ukraine, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Marise Payne said in a statement published on Wednesday on the ministry’s website.

The Australian top diplomat noted that new sanctions lists “include 34 senior members of the Russian-led movements in Ukrainian regions Donetsk and Luhansk, the so-called “People’s Council of the People’s Republic of Donetsk” and “People’s Council of the People’s Republic of Luhansk.”

“These individuals have violated the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine through their assertion of governmental authority over areas of Ukraine without the Ukrainian Government’s authorization,” Payne noted pointing out that the sanctions are also imposed on 76 members of the State Duma who “voted in favour of the resolution calling for President Putin to recognise Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states.”

The Australian foreign minister also specified that one member of the State Duma Oleg Matveychev “has been listed for the dissemination of disinformation and propaganda” arguing “for the payment of reparations for harm caused by Western sanctions and the war itself.”

Earlier, the Australian Department of Home Affairs reported that the Australian government had imposed sanctions on 75 Russian lawmakers, 20 ministers from the DPR and 12 key ministers from the LPR. Additionally, Russia’s television broadcasting journalist Vladimir Soloviev was also blacklisted.

To date, Australia has blacklisted 812 citizens of Russia and Belarus, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko as well as 47 largest Russian enterprises and organizations. Additionally, there is a ban on the export of weapons and spare parts, raw materials and equipment for oil and gas production and on the import of Russian energy products, weapons and spare parts.

On February 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people “who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years.” The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories. Following this, the US, the EU, the UK, Australia and a number of other countries announced the introduction of sanctions against Russian legal entities and private individuals. -TASS