LONDON (AA) – Britain on Thursday announced further sanctions targeting Russian banks, companies, entities and individuals.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson described the sanctions as the “largest and most severe package” of sanctions “that Russia has ever seen,” as Moscow launched a military intervention into Ukraine.
Giving a statement at the House of Commons, Johnson said Russian President Vladimir Putin was a “blood-stained aggressor who believes in imperial conquest” and was “always determined to attack his neighbour, no matter what we did.”
Putin “will never be able to cleanse the blood of Ukraine from his hands”, he said, adding that he will be “condemned” in the eyes of the world and of history.
Johnson said the UK will target all major Russian banks, five oligarchs and more than 100 companies and individuals.
The UK will freeze the assets of all major Russian banks next week, the prime minister said, but he added that the VTB Bank will see an immediate “full asset freeze.”
Russia’s defense company Rostec will also be hit by the new sanctions. Johnson said legislation will be introduced to block major Russian companies’ access to finance and stop the Russian state from raising sovereign debt on British markets.
He said the UK will extend sanctions to Belarus for aiding the military intervention into Ukraine.
The prime minister also said the state-owned Russian airliners Aeroflot will be banned from landing in the UK.
Earlier this week, the UK had announced sanctions against five Russian banks and various individuals.
The prime minister said he has “called for a meeting of NATO leaders, which will take place tomorrow and I will be convening the countries that contribute to the joint expeditionary force, which is led by the United Kingdom and comprises of both NATO and non-NATO members.”