Russia announced on Saturday that 963 US citizens appointed with President Joe Biden and other senior administration officials are now barred from entering the office of President of the Russian Federation. Moscow has said it is retaliating against what the Kremlin calls “hostile actions” by the US.
The highly symbolic travel ban was imposed on hundreds of Americans in response to the sharp deterioration in Russia’s relations with the West after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The war unleashed by the Kremlin on the territory of a neighboring state prompted Washington and its allies to impose large-scale sanctions against Moscow and increased the use of weapons in Ukraine.
Having published for the first time a complete list of US citizens who were blacklisted, the Russian Foreign Ministry said: “We emphasize that the hostile actions of Washington, directed against the United States like a boomerang, will continue to be rebuffed.”
The statement stated that the Russian counter-sanctions were an important response aimed at “forcing the ruling American regime to tie the rest of the world to the neo-colonial ‘rules-based world order’ to change its behavior, start new geopolitical realities.”
Earlier, the names of Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and CIA head William Burns were already included in the list.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation announced that 26 Canadian citizens, including the departments of defense and the military industry, were added to the “black list”, as well as Sophia and Grégoire Trudeau, the wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The new list of Canadian citizen presidents was released four days after Ottawa submitted a review barring Vladimir Putin and about a thousand members of his and Russian police control from entering Canada.
The list includes Canadian military commanders Jocelyn Paul, Erika Kenny and Angus Topshi held last month according to the heads of the Canadian Army, Air Force and Navy, respectively, as well as information from defense sector companies, including Lockheed Martin Canada and Raytheon Canada.
In response to Canadian sanctions, Russia has previously banned Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Treasury Secretary Christa Freeland and hundreds of other Canadians from entering the country.