The European Union announces new sanctions against Russia to “cripple Putin’s ability to finance his war machine.”
Ursula von der Leyen, president of the EU Commission, says the bloc has decided to remove some Russian banks from the SWIFT global banking system to “stop them from operating worldwide.”
The EU will also “paralyze the assets of Russia’s central bank” to freeze its transactions, von der Leyen says.
She says the move was coordinated with the US, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and the UK.
“The Russian army is committing barbaric actions during its invasion of Ukraine. It is bombing and launching missiles killing innocent people”
“As Russian forces unleash their assault on Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities, we are resolved to continue imposing massive costs on Russia, costs that will further isolate Russia from the international financial system and our economies,” she says.
Second, we will paralyse the assets of Russia’s central bank.
This will freeze its transactions.
And it will make it impossible for the Central Bank to liquidate its assets. pic.twitter.com/8H9eWkNCW9
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) February 26, 2022
The White House says in a statement that the Western countries will also prevent wealthy Russians from acquiring citizenship from other countries to bar them from international financial systems.
The White House says the group will launch a “a transatlantic task force that will ensure the effective implementation of our financial sanctions.”
“Finally, we will step up or coordination against disinformation and other forms of hybrid warfare,” the White House says.
“We stand with the Ukrainian people in this dark hour. Even beyond the measures we are announcing today, we are prepared to take further measures to hold Russia to account for its attack on Ukraine,” the White House says.