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Ukrainian, Russian Officials on Switzerland’s Updated Sanctions List

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Officials of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk republics and Russia were included into Switzerland’s updated sanctions list, published Wednesday.

MOSCOW, August 27 (RIA Novosti) – Officials of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk republics and Russia were included into Switzerland’s updated sanctions list, published Wednesday.

Switzerland on Wednesday increased sanctions against Russia over the situation in Ukraine to blacklist 11 individuals, six banks and two companies, according to the Swiss government’s website.

The sanctions came into force at 20:00 Moscow time [16:00 GMT].

The country’s Federal Council said in a statement that the list includes Alexei Gromov, a deputy Kremlin chief of staff, and Sergei Abisov, the interior minister of Russia’s newest region, Crimea. Russian businessmen Nikolai Shamalov, Yury Kovalchuk, Konstantin Malofeyev and Arkady Rotenberg were also blacklisted.

Switzerland also added Boris Litvinov, a deputy chairman of Donetsk People’s Republic’s Supreme Council and Luhansk People’s Republic press secretary Oksana Chigrina.

The six banks that were included on the list are Sberbank, VTB, Gazprombank, Vneshekonombank, Rosselkhozbank and the Russian National Commercial Bank.

In addition, Switzerland also blacklisted Russian defense concern Almaz-Antei and low-cost airline Dobrolyot that performed flights to Crimea.

These six banks and two companies were mentioned in the latest European Union’s sanctions blacklist update.

The first round of sanctions was imposed by the United States, the European Union and some other Western countries after they refused to recognize the legitimacy of Crimea’s reunification with Russia in March.

As the Ukrainian crisis escalated, the United States pressed for its Western allies to follow its lead. Switzerland, Canada, Australia and Japan caved in to the US sanctions push and drew up their own blacklists.

Several rounds of anti-Russian sanctions have been imposed so far.

Moscow has repeatedly warned that sanctions will have a boomerang effect, and will negatively affect the economies of the countries imposing them.

In August, Russia introduced protective measures banning the import of agricultural and food products from countries that had imposed sanctions on Russia, unjustifiably blaming Moscow for meddling in Ukraine’s internal affairs.

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