United States President Joe Biden announced this Friday (23) more than 500 new sanctions against Russia in response to the death of Alexei Navalny and the war in Ukraine. Once again, the Democrat publicly blamed Putin for his opponent’s death.

In a speech at the White House, Biden stated that the sanctions “will ensure that Putin pays an even dearer price for his international aggression and domestic repression”.

The president also took advantage of the occasion to pressure Republican deputies to approve a new financial aid package for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan: “That’s why the House of Representatives needs to pass the bipartisan security supplement bill, before it’s too late to more,” Biden said.

On Thursday, on a campaign trip to San Francisco, California, Biden met with Navalny’s widow and daughter, who studies at Stanford University. At the meeting, the opposition leader’s wife also blamed Putin for the death. Russian authorities say Alexei Navalny died of natural causes.

Sanctions and their impact

The sanctions package announced today is the largest since the start of the war in Ukraine. In the last almost 2 years, more than 4 thousand entities have been sanctioned by the US in response to the war.

The new measures announced by the White House are diverse. They range from a list of approximately 100 Russian companies and individuals that are banned from exporting to citizens of countries such as China, the United Arab Emirates, Vietnam and Liechtenstein who are said to have collaborated with the Kremlin.

However, the effect of the new sanctions on the Russian economy is expected to be minimal. Russia is already the most sanctioned country in the world and, since the beginning of the war, it has already found a way to circumvent the restrictions imposed by Washington.

The sanctions, in fact, are threatening the dominance of the US dollar itself. In December, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin announced that Russia and China had completely abandoned the use of the dollar in bilateral trade.

A similar situation occurs with India, which buys crude oil from the Russians using mostly other currencies, such as the United Arab Emirates dirham and the Indian rupee itself.

“Cockroaches and Flies”

Alexei Navalny was a Russian blogger, lawyer and politician who was notable for his opposition to Putin and his ties to the far right. They used to attend acts of groups linked to fascism and xenophobes. He ran for mayor of Moscow in 2013 on a platform of attacking immigrants, whom he called “delinquents.”

He also tried to run for the 2018 presidential election, but his candidacy was denied. He accused the Russian government of attempted poisoning in 2020 for its campaign to expose corruption. He has been imprisoned in Russia since returning to the country in January 2021.

Amnesty International removed his name from the list of “prisoners of conscience” after the release of a video in which he compared immigrants to cockroaches and flies and pretended to shoot a woman dressed in a burqa, a typical Islamic costume.

The Russian government said his death in prison was due to “natural causes”.

Editing: Rodrigo Durão Coelho

Source: www.brasildefato.com.br

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