(3rd LD) U.S. unveils new major sanctions package for Russia’s war against Ukraine, Navalny’s death

WASHINGTON, The United States on Friday announced a new major package of sanctions and export control restrictions, including one against a South Korea-based firm, to ensure accountability for Russia's ongoing war against Ukraine and the death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny. On the eve of the second anniversary of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Washington unveiled the package, which President Joe Biden said will ensure Russian President Vladimir Putin "pays an even steeper price for his aggression abroad and repression at home." The Treasury and State Departments said that they are sanctioning over 500 individuals and entities to "impose additional costs for Russia's repression, human rights abuses, and aggression against Ukraine." It marked the largest number of such sanctions since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The Bureau of Industry and Security under the Commerce Department added to its "entity list" for export restrictions 93 entities, which included Daesung International Trading, a co mpany located in South Korea's southeastern city of Gimhae. "Today, I am announcing more than 500 new sanctions against Russia for its ongoing war of conquest on Ukraine and for the death of Alexei Navalny, who was a courageous anti-corruption activist and Putin's fiercest opposition leader," Biden said in a statement. "These sanctions will target individuals connected to Navalny's imprisonment as well as Russia's financial sector, defense industrial base, procurement networks and sanctions evaders across multiple continents," he added. As part of the sweeping package, the State Department designated two additional entities that have been involved in the transfer of munitions from North Korea to Russia. One of the two entities is a Russian firm that manages a terminal at Vostochny Port in the Russian Far East, through which more than 7,400 containers of munitions and munitions-related materials were delivered from the North. The other is Dunay Naval Missile Facility, a Russian naval base and port facility involved in the transfer of munitions between the two countries. The department noted that since September last year, the North has delivered more than 10,000 containers of munitions or munitions-related materials to Russia. The latest sanctions package focused on denying Russia the resources necessary to support its war efforts, the Treasury Department said. The Office of Foreign Assets Control under the Treasury Department targeted Russia's core financial infrastructure, including the operator of the Mir National Payment System and Russian banks, investment firms, and financial technology companies to reduce Russia's use of the international financial system. according to the department. The package also included the State Department's designation of three Russian government officials in connection with Navalny's death. "This solemn anniversary and Alexei Navalny's death in Russian custody are stark and tragic reminders of Putin's brazen disregard for human life, from Ukrainians suffering the costs of his unprovoked war to people across Russia who dare to expose the corrupt abuses that fuel his regime," said Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen was quoted as saying in a release. "Russia's economy and military-industrial base are showing clear signs of weakness in part due to the actions we, along with our partners and allies around the world, have taken to support Ukraine's brave defense," she added. In a separate statement, Secretary of State Antony Blinken stressed Washington's commitment to employing "all available tools" to disrupt Russia's war efforts. "The United States will use all available tools to hinder Russia's ability to access the global financial system, disrupt Russia's military-industrial-procurement, stand in solidarity with Russians striving for a more democratic future, and ensure Putin's invasion remains a strategic failure for Russia," the secretary said. Earlier in the day, Biden renewed an appeal for the passage of a bill on support for Ukraine. "Congress knows that by suppor ting this bill, we can strengthen security in Europe, strengthen our security at home, and stand up to Putin. Opposing this bill only plays into his hands," he said in a statement. "History is watching. The failure to support Ukraine at this critical moment will not be forgotten. Now is the time for us to stand strong with Ukraine and stand united with our allies and partners." Source: Yonhap News Agency