Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Ademo, one of the main US coordinators for Russian affairs, said the latest round of sanctions imposed by the United States and its allies on Russian President Putin will force him to focus on the cohesion of the Russian economy, and away from the war. The sanctions strategy, she said Tuesday.
Adeemo told The Associated Press that the sanctions will target Russian supply chains that are fueling the war, including “everything from looking for ways to go after military hardware created to be used not just in Ukraine but to project energy elsewhere.”
The United States and the European Union have imposed rounds of sanctions against Russia, from targeting Putin’s adult daughters to agriculture and oil.
The White House said Russia’s gross domestic product could shrink by as much as 15% this year, and inflation is already rising above 15%. But Russia has managed to stabilize key parts of its economy by artificially propping up the ruble, which has allowed it to recover quickly while the United States and its allies continue to pile up sanctions.
Putin publicly ignored the sanctions, saying that Russia was ready for them, and noting that they would only destroy the economies of the countries that imposed the sanctions.
USA Today on the phone:Join the new Russian-Ukrainian war channel
Visual interpreter:Mapping and tracing the Russian invasion of Ukraine
The latest developments
► Cyprus said it is moving to revoke the citizenship of four Russians and 17 members of their families who are among those approved by the European Union.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that Russia forcibly deported more than 500,000 Ukrainians to the Russian Federation.
In the early hours of Wednesday morning, the Interior Ministry said more than 720 people were killed in Bucha and other Kyiv suburbs occupied by Russian forces, and more than 200 are considered missing.
A senior US defense official said the Biden administration is preparing another, more diverse package of military support, possibly totaling $750 million, to be announced in the coming days.
Russia has violated international law and Human rights violations were committed in UkraineThe Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe claimed in a report released Wednesday. The Austria-based agency, which includes 57 countries in Europe, North America and Asia, found that if Russia had “respected its (international law) obligations in terms of distinction, proportionality and precautions in attack and with respect to specially protected objects such as hospitals, the death toll would have been And the civilian casualties will still be much lower.”
The report concluded that fewer homes, hospitals, cultural property, schools, apartment buildings and infrastructure systems would have been damaged or destroyed.
Ukraine has not escaped agency review. Some “violations and problems” were also identified in connection with the practices of the Ukrainian army, including the treatment of captured Russian soldiers as criminals rather than prisoners of war.
The report notes, however, that “a detailed assessment of most allegations of violations of international humanitarian law and identification of war crimes related to specific incidents was not possible.”
The leaders of the Baltic states in Ukraine to show their support for the stricken nation
The presidents of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia were in Ukraine on Wednesday for talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky. Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia – like Ukraine – were part of the Soviet Union for half a century.
And now the Baltic states fear that they will be the next targets of the Russian fight, and together they total about 6 million people compared to the 44 million in Ukraine. The Baltic states have one advantage that Ukraine did not have – they are members of NATO. NATO leaders have made clear that the alliance will defend all of its members from Russian aggression.
Estonian President Alar Karis posted photos on social media of the leaders boarding the train: “On our way to Kyiv, to a city that has suffered so badly from the Russian war since my last visit… We are visiting #Ukraine to show the people strong support, my dear friend President ZelenskyyUa will meet #SlavaUkraini.” (Slava Ukraini translates to “Glory to Ukraine.”)
Obama: Putin ‘always tough’ but invasion ‘reckless’
Former President Barack Obama threw his weight on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in an interview with NBC News’ TODAY, where he answered questions about his handling of Russian relations while in office and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s state of mind.
Obama said the war in Ukraine and Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 were a reminder “not to take our democracy for granted,” adding that the Biden administration was “doing what it should be doing.”
“Putin has always been tough against his people and others,” Obama said. “What we saw with the invasion of Ukraine was that it was reckless in a way that you wouldn’t have expected eight or ten years ago, but you know, the danger was always there.”
Contributing: The Associated Press
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