WASHINGTON, Feb 1 (Reuters) – The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on 22 individuals and entities in several countries accused of being tied to a global sanctions evasion network that supports Russia’s military-industrial complex.
The sanctions, which come as Washington appears to be increasing pressure on Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine, are part of a US effort to target evasion of its punitive measures around the world and limit Russia’s access to revenue needed for the war, the US Treasury. The department said in a statement.
The action targeted a sanctions evasion network that the Treasury said was led by Russia and Cyprus-based arms dealer Igor Zimenkov, who, along with his son, Jonatan, was sentenced on Wednesday.
The network has been involved in projects related to Russia’s defense capabilities, including providing high-tech equipment after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Treasury said. Washington has also accused several members of a network that supports state-owned Russian defense agencies under sanctions.
See 2 more stories
Zimenkov has also supported the Belarusian military-industrial complex by facilitating sales efforts in Latin America for Belarusian defense entities under US sanctions, the Treasury said.
Members of the targeted network include Singapore-based Asia Trading & Construction PTE Limited and its director, which Khazanah accused of having sold helicopters on behalf of US-approved Rostec to governments in Latin America.
GBD Limited, another company in the network targeted under sanctions, has attempted to supply weapons systems to African governments, the Treasury said.
Companies in Cyprus, Bulgaria and Israel, as well as several people, are also targeted for sanctions.
The Russian Embassy in the United States said that the “illegal steps” taken by Washington will not achieve their goals.
“The Russian economy remains far from ‘in tatters’, as some in the West hope,” he said.
The action, which exempts US assets from being added to the sanctions list and generally prevents America from dealing with them, marks the latest round of US sanctions against Russia over the war in Ukraine, which has killed or maimed thousands and reduced cities to rubble. .
“Russia’s desperate attempt to use proxies to avoid US sanctions shows that sanctions have made it harder and more expensive for Russia’s military-industrial complex to resupply Putin’s war machine,” Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said in the statement.
Reporting by Daphne Psaledakis and Doina Chiacu, additional reporting by Dan Whitcomb; edited by Deepa Babington
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.