The United States is increasing pressure on Russia by expanding financial sanctions and visa restrictions against individuals who abuse human rights, as well as those who are attempting to facilitate the evasion of sanctions imposed on Russia by the United States and its partners.
The State Department designated Khusein Merlovich Khutaev, Nurid Denilbekovich Salamov, and Dzhabrail Alkhazurovich Akhmatov, under Section 7031(c) for their involvement in gross violations of human rights perpetrated in the Russian Federation’s Republic of Chechnya against human rights defender Oyub Titiev.
The State Department took steps to impose visa restrictions on 587 individuals under a policy that covers officials in the Russian Federation involved in suppressing dissent.
The State Department announced additional action to place visa restrictions on 48 individuals who threaten or violate the sovereignty, territorial integrity, or political independence of Ukraine. Ten of them are purported “authorities” of the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic” or “Luhansk People’s Republic” involved in human rights abuses in Russia-controlled areas of the Donbas since 2014.
The State Department also took steps to place visa restrictions on 17 Belarusian nationals for undermining democracy in Belarus. These individuals harassed and intimidated strikers supporting the pro-democracy movement in Belarus and worked to expel students for participating in peaceful protests.
The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, or OFAC, designated a number of entities and individuals for attempting to evade or to facilitate evasion of sanctions imposed on Russia by the United States and its international partners.
These include Russian commercial bank Transkapitalbank and a global network of more than 40 individuals and entities headed by U.S.-designated Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev. The primary mission of some of these organizations is to facilitate sanctions evasion for Russian entities.
Also designated were 16 of Bank Otkrities board members, along with Bitriver AG—a major cryptocurrency mining company—and several of its subsidiaries.
“Treasury can and will target those who evade, attempt to evade, or aid the evasion of U.S. sanctions against Russia, as they are helping support Putin’s brutal war of choice,” said Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson.
“The United States will work to ensure that the sanctions we have imposed, in close coordination with our international partners, degrade the Kremlin’s ability to project power and fund its invasion.”