Russia-Ukraine news: US and UK could personally sanction Putin for invasion
New shipment of Russian military equipment arrives in Belarus amid tensions in Ukraine
The UK and US could both personally sanction Russian President Vladimir Putin after Joe Biden suggested it could be an option in the event of an invasion.
UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We haven’t ruled anything out in terms of sanctions, and in fact we will be legislating to toughen our sanctions regime and we ensure that we are fully capable of hitting both individuals and businesses and banks in Russia in the event of an incursion.
It comes as Russia held military drills on Wednesday and deployed more forces and fighter jets to Belarus for drills next month as officials prepared to sit down for four-party talks in Paris on the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
The Kremlin’s liaison man on Ukraine was due to meet French, German and Ukrainian officials for ‘Normandy format’ talks in Paris amid a Russian military buildup near Ukraine that has raised fears of an invasion .
Kremlin says Putin’s personal sanctions would be politically destructive – not painful
Following threats that the US and UK would personally sanction Putin in the event of an incursion into Ukraine, Vladimir Putin said such a move would be “politically destructive” rather than painful from a Western perspective .
Russia insists it does not plan to invade, but the West has threatened harsh economic sanctions if that happens. US President Joe Biden has said he will consider personal sanctions against Putin and Britain has said it would not rule out doing the same.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said American politicians who talk about possible personal sanctions against Putin do not have enough expert knowledge on the subject.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 10:48
UK and US consider personally sanctioning Putin over threat of Ukrainian invasion
Both the UK and the US have threatened to personally sanction Russian President Vladimir Putin if he chooses to invade Ukraine.
It comes as the presence of more than 100,000 Russian troops on the Ukrainian border has raised the specter of war in Europe.
While the West sends weapons to Ukraine in preparation for a potential conflict, it continues to try to deter Russia from a military incursion by threatening economic sanctions. Moscow denies wanting to attack its neighbor – as it did in 2014 in Crimea – but stresses that it can move troops as it pleases inside its territory.
Our reporter, RorySullivan, has the full story below:
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 10:45 a.m.
Ukrainians ‘fear for their lives’ as PM thinks he’s above the law, says head of Common Standards committee
The chairman of the Commons Committee on Standard’s has accused Boris Johnson of believing he is ‘above the law’ as an international crisis unfolds in Ukraine.
Chris Bryant has expressed his anger at the government’s handling of alleged lockdown breaches in Number 10 and said Boris Johnson’s moral authority has been “completely eroded”.
“That’s why it’s utterly despicable that we had to go through all of this, because you have the complete erosion of the prime minister’s moral authority because of this behaviour,” he said.
“It’s so disrespectful to bus drivers, intensive care nurses and everyone else that Tory MPs come on air and say ‘Well, all those people in Downing Street, we’re working awfully hard. Well, I’m sorry, everyone was working terribly hard.
He added: “I was in Ukraine last week. I think people fear for their lives and it angers me that the Prime Minister thinks he is above the law.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 10:30 am
Ukraine has no objection to US written responses to Russia, minister says
Ukraine has no objection to responses the United States will send to Russia as part of negotiations to avoid a military escalation against Ukraine, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said Wednesday during a briefing. hurry.
Russia expects Washington to respond in writing to its proposals for sweeping security guarantees it expects from the West, including blocking Ukraine’s membership of NATO’s transatlantic alliance .
Mr Kuleba also said that Russia was trying to sow panic in Ukraine. He hasn’t massed enough troops for a full-scale offensive, but that doesn’t mean he couldn’t do it later, Kuleba said, adding the risks were high.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 10:15 a.m.
Russia holds military drills ahead of critical talks
Russia held military drills on Wednesday and deployed more forces and fighter jets to Belarus for drills next month as officials prepared to sit down for four-party talks in Paris on the conflict in the east of Ukraine.
The Kremlin’s top man on Ukraine was due to meet French, German and Ukrainian officials for “Normandy format” talks in Paris amid a Russian military buildup near Ukraine that is raising fears of an invasion.
Russia insists it does not plan to invade, but the West has threatened harsh economic sanctions if that happens. US President Joe Biden said on Tuesday he would consider personal sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin and Britain said on Wednesday it would not rule out doing the same.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 10:00
“Nothing is excluded” in terms of sanctions against Russia, warns Liz Truss
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said the UK and its allies must show they were united to help deter a Russian incursion into Ukraine.
Asked if the UK would support personal sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin, after US President Joe Biden suggested this could be an option in the event of an invasion, Ms Truss told the BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We have not ruled anything out in terms of sanctions, and in fact we will be legislating to toughen our sanctions regime and ensure that we are fully able to hit both individuals, businesses and banks in Russia in the event of an incursion.
“What is important is that all our allies do the same, because it is through collective action, showing Vladimir Putin that we are united, that we will help deter a Russian incursion.”
Asked if she was worried about united action, she said: “We would like to see our allies do more to help provide defensive support to Ukraine and also put these sanctions in place.
“We have made tremendous progress. I hosted the G7 in Liverpool in December, and all G7 members agreed that there would be serious economic costs if Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 9:45 a.m.
ICYMI: Biden plans to ‘maximize pain’ for Russia if it invades Ukraine
The United States is preparing a large tranche of economic sanctions to “maximize the pain in the Kremlin” if Russia invades Ukraine, The Independent was told by a US government source.
These could include blocking financial transfers from Russia’s three largest banks, two additional sources said.
Some 100,000 Russian troops are believed to have been deployed by Moscow on the Ukraine-Belarus border. British Armed Forces Minister James Heappey said Russian forces were already in Ukraine. Experts in the region said an invasion was now more likely than not.
Our economic editor, Anna Isaac, has the full story below:
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 9:30 a.m.
Markets ‘nervous’ over Ukraine-Russia tensions, expert says
Chief strategist at Brewin Dolphin Guy Foster, one of the UK’s largest wealth management funds, said markets were “nervous” over tensions between Ukraine and Russia.
Speaking to GB News this morning, he said: “Ukraine is something the markets are nervous about, but it’s not really the main driver. It’s inflation and interest rates.
“A lot of times the markets take oddly bullish views on these geopolitical events, especially military conflicts, often they perceive that it doesn’t have a lot of economic impact that the man in the street would normally expect, but the thing interesting with Ukraine is that it has the potential to spill over into this inflation story, especially obviously because of Russia’s close connection to energy markets and Ukraine as an energy conduit from Russia and into Europe, this is where the fear of a stalemate intensifies the high energy prices that frustrate us all”
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 9:15 a.m.
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss says Russia will face ‘severe sanctions’ if incursion into Ukraine
Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said Russia would face “severe sanctions” if it made an incursion into Ukraine.
Talk to Sky News she said: “We are already providing support to Ukraine. We provide defensive weapons. We provide economic support.
“We urge Russia to refrain from an incursion and make it very clear that if it were to do so, it would come at a significant economic cost to Russia – severe sanctions.”
On what those sanctions might look like, she said, “They would target individuals, they would target financial institutions, and they would be coordinated with all of our allies across Europe, the United States, and others.”
Asked if the government would support individual sanctions against President Vladimir Putin, Ms Truss said she was “not ruling anything out”.
“We are not ruling anything out and we will introduce new legislation to toughen our sanctions regime so that we can target more companies and individuals in Russia,” she said.
Pressed on whether that would include the president, she said, “I’m not ruling that out.”
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 09:00
Pope Francis celebrates day of prayer over tensions between Ukraine and Russia
Pope Francis has called for today (January 26) to be a day of prayer in the face of growing tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
Writing on Twitter, he said: “I follow with concern the rising tensions which threaten to inflict a further blow to peace in Ukraine and jeopardize the security of the European continent. Therefore, I propose that next Wednesday January 26 be a day of prayer for peace.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 26, 2022 8:45 a.m.