UK sanctions collaborators of Russia’s illegal sham referendums
The Foreign Secretary has today (26 September) announced 92 sanctions in response to the Russian regime imposing sham referendums in 4 regions of Ukraine – a clear violation of international law, including the UN charter.
The Russian regime has organised these sham referendums in a desperate attempt to grab land and justify their illegal war. The process reflects their approach in Crimea in 2014, combining disinformation, intimidation, and fake results. These referendums do not represent the demonstrated will of the Ukrainian people and are a severe violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and political independence.
The Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said:
Sham referendums held at the barrel of a gun cannot be free or fair and we will never recognise their results. They follow a clear pattern of violence, intimidation, torture, and forced deportations in the areas of Ukraine Russia has seized.
Today’s sanctions will target those behind these sham votes, as well as the individuals that continue to prop up the Russian regime’s war of aggression. We stand with the Ukrainian people and our support will continue as long as it takes to restore their sovereignty.
Sergei Yeliseyev: the Head of Government in Kherson, recently installed by the Russian government and Vice Admiral in the Russian Navy. Since defecting from the Ukrainian navy in 2014, Yeliseyev has continued to undermine the independence of Ukraine
Goznak, a security documents company known for its monopoly on the production of ‘tens of millions’ of state documents including expedited passports in the temporarily controlled territories, has also been sanctioned.
Putin continues to rely on his cabal of oligarchs and selected elites in order to fund his war. Today a further four oligarchs, with a combined global net worth estimated at £6.3 billion, have also been sanctioned for supporting or obtaining benefit from the Government of Russia and operating in sectors of strategic significance. These include:
God Nisanov and Zarakh Iliev: known as the ‘Kings of Russian real estate’, and with a joint global net worth of £2 billion, the pair own and control the Kievskaya Ploshchad Group, a major construction company operating across Russia
23 individuals from the Gazprombank Board of Directors and Management Board
We stand united alongside our international partners in condemning the Russian government’s egregious actions. Alongside partners we will continue to pursue targeted sanctions and are committed to sustained economic and political pressure on Russia.
As of today, the UK has sanctioned over 1,200 individuals and over 120 entities, including over 120 oligarchs with an estimated combined global net worth of over £130 billion.