Washington (CNN) — The US Treasury Department on Tuesday approved the alleged girlfriend of Russian President Vladimir Putin as part of a series of measures targeting the Russian elite in the Biden administration’s latest attempt to punish the Kremlin for the ongoing war in Ukraine.
Alina Maratovna Kabaeva, who has been romantically linked to the Russian leader, was acknowledged to be “a leader, official, senior executive or member of the Board of Directors of the Government of the Russian Federation”. Treasury Department.
The statement describes the 39-year-old Kabaeva as having a “close relationship with Putin”. She is a former member of the State Duma “and the current head of the National Media Group, a pro-Kremlin empire of television, radio and printing organizations.”
In April, the Wall Street Journal reported that the US was considering imposing sanctions on Kabaeva, but there were concerns that such a move would increase tensions given her close ties to Putin.
Kabaeva was previously approved by the European Union and the United Kingdom.
Separately, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced sanctions against three oligarchs, a Russian state-owned company that oversees the Ministry of Transport, “four individuals and one entity illegally entering Ukraine’s territory in collaboration with Russia.” working from”, and 24 defense and technology-related entities against Russian.
Blinken said the United States is also imposing visa restrictions on 893 Russian Federation officials and “31 foreign government officials who have acted in support of Russia’s alleged annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean territory and thereby threatening Ukraine’s sovereignty.” granted or violated.”
Many of the designations announced by the US target oligarchs previously sanctioned by allies such as the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and the European Union. The sanctions come as the war in Ukraine has entered its sixth month.
“While innocent people suffer from the illegal war of invasion of Russia, Putin’s allies have enriched themselves and financed affluent lifestyles,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement. “The Treasury Department will use every tool at its disposal to ensure that the Russian elite and Kremlin supporters are held accountable for their involvement in a war that has cost countless lives.”
Among the oligarchs approved by the State Department on Tuesday are Andrey Igorevich Melnichenko, Alexander Anatolevich Ponomarenko and Dmitry Alexandrovich Pampyansky. The State Department said in a fact sheet that the AXIOMA yacht was identified as a blocked asset in which Pampiansky is interested.
According to that fact sheet, Ponomarenko is “an oligarch with close ties to other oligarchs and the construction of Vladimir Putin’s seaside palace” previously sanctioned by the UK, EU, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Among the oligarchs sanctioned by the Treasury Department on Tuesday is Andrey Grigoryevich Gurev, the Russian billionaire founder of the “FosAgro” chemical company and a former government official described by the Treasury as “a known close ally” of Putin. He is also sanctioned by the UK and according to the US Treasury, “owns the Wittenhurst Estate, the second largest property in London after Buckingham Palace.”
The Treasury Department on Tuesday identified the Alfa Nero yacht, reportedly owned by AG Gurev, as a blocked asset.
AG Guryev’s son, Andrey Andreevich Guryev, was also approved by the US on Tuesday, as was his investment firm Dzhi AI Invest OOO, after being previously approved by Australia, Canada, the European Union, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. .
Natalya Valeryevna Popova was recognized “for operating or operating in the technical sector of the economy of the Russian Federation, and for being or being a leader, officer, senior executive or member of the Board of Directors of LLC VEB Ventures”, an approved unit is. She was also approved to be the wife of Kirill Alexandrovich Dmitriev, the general director of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF). Both he and the RDIF were sanctioned in the days following the start of the war.
Joint stock company Promising Industrial and Infrastructure Technologies, “a financial institution owned by the Russian Federal Agency for State Property Management,” and its CEO, Anton Sergeevich Urusov, were sanctioned Tuesday in connection with alleged sanctions evasion. ,
According to the Treasury Department, “JSC PPIT attempted to facilitate the prevention of sanctions imposed on the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF).”
The Treasury Department approved the Publicnoe Aktsnerno Obschesto Magnitogorsky Metallurgskyi Kombinat (MMK), described as “one of the world’s largest steel producers”, and the chairman of its board, Viktor Filippovich Rashnikov—who is also known as Australia, Canada and the European Union, Switzerland. has also been approved by UK—and two subsidiaries of MMK.
“MMK is one of Russia’s largest taxpayers and provides a substantial source of revenue to the government of the Russian Federation,” the Treasury Department said. The Agency has authorized a settlement period for transactions with MMK and one of its subsidiaries.