Russia has permanently banned 963 Americans from entering the country in retaliation to U.S. sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine.
The Russian Foreign Ministry on Saturday for the first time published a full list of American citizens subject to its travel sanctions. The move comes as a response after the United States and allies imposed sanctions on Russia over its Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine.
The list includes previously announced individuals including President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Karris, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army Gen. Mark Milley, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and CIA Director William Burns.
Also on the list are other members of the Biden administration and hundreds of Democrats and Republican lawmakers in both the House and Senate.
Former lawmakers and officials, as well business executives, journalists, and others are also banned from Russia. They include former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Biden’s son Hunter Biden, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and George Soros.
Actors Morgan Freeman and Rob Reiner also made the list. The two have worked to support a nonprofit called The Committee to Investigate Russia, which seeks to counter Russian interference in U.S. elections. The group was launched in 2017. Reiner is on its advisory board while Freeman had spoken in a video produced by the group that year, which referenced alleged Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement accompanying the travel ban list, “We emphasize that the hostile actions taken by Washington, which boomerang against the United States itself, will continue to receive a proper rebuff.”
The ministry said that Russia’s travel sanctions were a necessary response to the U.S. sanctions, and is aimed at “forcing the ruling American regime, which is trying to impose a neo-colonial ‘rules-based world order’ on the rest of the world, to change its behavior, recognizing new geopolitical realities.”
It added: “Russia does not seek confrontation and is open to honest, mutually respectful dialogue, separating the American people, who are always respected by us, from the U.S. authorities, who incite Russophobia, and those who serve them. It is these people who are included in the Russian ‘black list.’”
Biden on the same day signed legislation amounting to another $40 billion in U.S. aid for Ukraine intended to support the country through September. The bill had bipartisan support, and Biden praised lawmakers saying they sent a clear message that U.S. citizens “stand together with the brave people of Ukraine as they defend their democracy and freedom.”
Critics say the measure sends more money to Ukraine amid other challenges currently facing the United States, which include rising inflation and gas prices, a baby formula shortage, and continued illegal immigrants entering the country via the southern border.
The Russian Foreign Ministry also said on Saturday it added 26 new names to Canadians banned from entering Russia. The names included defense chiefs, defense industry executives, and Sophie Gregoire Trudeau, the wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The new list was published four days after Canada introduced a bill that will ban President Vladimir Putin and about 1,000 members of his government and military from traveling there.
This is an excerpt from The Epoch Times.
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