Wednesday, December 7

Ukraine’s top canine deminer receives award from Zelensky

The US State Department on Sunday announced visa restrictions on more than 2,000 Russian and Belarusian military officials for violations related to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and a new visa restriction policy targeting Russian officials for human rights abuses, violations of international humanitarian law and corruption in Ukraine. 

The department also announced sanctions on eight Russian maritime-related companies, including the Russian Ministry of Defense’s shipping company for its involvement in Russia’s “illegal seizure and occupation of Ukraine,” and added 69 vessels to the US Treasury Department’s list of specially designated nationals and blocked persons.

It also sanctioned three Belarusian officials “for their involvement in a gross violation of human rights.”

According to a fact sheet from the State Department, they imposed “visa restrictions on 2,596 members of the Russian Federation military and 13 Belarusian military officials pursuant to a policy under Section 212(a)(3)(C) of the Immigration and Nationality Act that applies to those who are believed to have supported, been actively complicit in, or been responsible for ordering or otherwise directing or authorizing actions that threaten or violate the sovereignty, territorial integrity, or political independence of Ukraine.”

The newly created visa restriction, announced in the fact sheet, “applies to Russian Federation military officials and Russia-backed or Russia-installed purported authorities who are believed to have been involved in human rights abuses, violations of international humanitarian law, or public corruption in Ukraine, including in the so-called ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ or ‘Luhansk People’s Republic.’”

“Family members of those who fall under the policy will also be ineligible for visas,” it said.

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