UK sanctions target Russian general and media heavyweights

UK sanctions target Russian general and media heavyweights

World News

The UK government has expanded its sanctions against Russia to 14 more people and organisations principally involved with information and media, including a prominent TV anchor and the group that controls the RT television channel.

The new measures, unveiled by the foreign secretary, Liz Truss, are aimed at countering what Truss called the “torrent of lies” from Russian media about the invasion of Ukraine.

Another individual targeted in this set of sanctions is Col Gen Mikhail Mizintsev, the senior officer in charge of the siege of Mariupol, the southern Ukrainian city being bombarded relentlessly by Russian forces at enormous civilian cost. Mizintsev, who heads the Russian national defence management centre, is accused of employing tactics similar to those used to bomb Syrian cities.

Among those also facing sanctions is Sergey Brilev, a presenter on the Russian state-run Rossiya channel. The Foreign Office notice said Brilev previously lived in the UK but would no longer be able to visit or to access any UK assets.

Also targeted is TV-Novosti, which controls RT, the Russian TV station whose licence to broadcast in the UK was revoked recently by the UK regulator, Ofcom. Another media group named is Rossiya Segodnya, which controls the state-run news agency Sputnik.

So far, the UK has imposed sanctions on 817 individuals and more than 1,200 individuals and entities combined, officials say.

Other individuals named include: Aleksandr Zharov, the chief executive of Gazprom-Media and former head of Roskomnadzor, Russia’s federal service for the supervision of communications, information technology and mass media; Alexey Nikolov, the managing director of RT; and Anton Anisimov, the editor-in-chief of Sputnik.

“We want to continue to further ratchet up the pressure on Putin and his regime,” Boris Johnson’s official spokesperson said. “We know that countries can adapt to sanctions over time, so it’s right that we keep moving forwards on this. It’s equally right to place sanctions on those who are seeking to misinform people on a mass scale, and that is what these sanctions are targeted at.”

Truss said: “Putin’s war on Ukraine is based on a torrent of lies. Britain has helped lead the world in exposing Kremlin disinformation, and this latest batch of sanctions hits the shameless propagandists who push out Putin’s fake news and narratives.”

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