U.K. Targets Putin's Foreign Military Suppliers in Mass Sanction Effort
Recent Sanctions the 'Largest-Ever' Effort of the U.K.
The United Kingdom announced sanctions of 22 foreign individuals, companies, and three Russian firms that supply weapons and vital components to Russia's war machine. The motion was reportedly an effort to stymie Russia's military capabilities.
The U.K. Foreign Secretary, James Cleverly, described the move on Tuesday as the "largest-ever U.K. action on military suppliers in third countries."
The targeted businesses and individuals are spread across Turkey, Dubai, Slovakia, Switzerland, Iran, and Belarus, and are involved in activities ranging from exporting microelectronics to arms dealing. The U.K.'s clear and firm stance demonstrates the commitment to preventing third-party weapon supply and clamping down on any entities involved in sanctions circumvention.
Key players among the sanctioned include Turkik Union and Azu International from Turkey, involved in exporting microelectronics crucial for Russia's military actions in Ukraine. Dubai's Aeromotus Unmanned Aerial Vehicles Trading LLC also faces sanctions for its role in supplying drones and essential components to Russia. The players listed in the sanctions list have been described by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project as "vital" organizations for Russian military exports.
Furthermore, sanctions are reaching individuals such as Ashot Mkrtychev, a Slovakian national connected to arms transactions between the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Russia, and Anselm Oskar Schmucki, a Swiss national linked to Russia's financial services.
The U.K.'s measures also extend to Iran and Belarus, both known for their support of Russia's military endeavors. London had previously imposed sanctions against Belarus for its continued backing of Russia's 2022 invasion of Ukraine. Concerning Iran, the U.K. government has singled out the country's suppliers of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), allegedly used by Russia to target civilians in Ukraine.
The U.K.'s action adds to the already considerable pressure on Russia's economy. The Center for Strategic and International Studies forecasts that Russia will suffer long-term economic consequences due to its restricted access to Western supplies.
With over 10,000 new sanctions imposed since February 2022 and a total of approximately 13,000 sanctions overall from countries other than the U.K., Russia has become "the most sanctioned country in the world." Although these actions have not completely crippled the Russian economy, experts predict that it will take at least a decade for Russia to return to pre-war economic conditions and living standards.
As a reaction to these sanctions, Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed an executive order to suspend specific parts of international tax treaties with nations considered "unfriendly."
The U.K.'s sweeping sanctions demonstrate a robust global strategy to hold those who aid and abet Russia's military aggression accountable. By targeting not only Russian firms but also individuals and companies across several countries, the U.K. sends a strong signal that any form of support for Russia's war efforts will not be tolerated.