Australia on Thursday announced new sanctions against 67 Russian officials, bringing the total number of “individuals and entities” sanctioned since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine “close to 600,” the foreign ministry said.
The latest sanctions have targeted prominent Russian businessmen, as well as senior military and government officials, including Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Grigorenko, Economy Minister Maxim Reshetnikov and senior Russian politician Alexander Babakov.
Among those in the latest lists is Colonel General Mikhail Mizintsev, responsible for attacks on “innocent civilians”, including the “theatre bombing” in Mariupol.
“This latest round of sanctions follows the emergence of evidence of war crimes committed by Russia in Bucha and other cities around Kiev,” the statement said. “Australia condemns these atrocities in the strongest possible terms.”
“The horror is almost unspeakable and we see it every day. But I think Australians can be proud of the efforts our country is making to support Ukraine,” Foreign Secretary Marise Payne told local radio station 2GB.
Some background: A chorus of world leaders has called for increased sanctions and investigations into war crimes against Russia over the alleged atrocities in the city of Bucha, northwest of the capital Kiev.
Shortly after the withdrawal of Russian troops from Bucha, civilian bodies were found scattered across a street and a mass grave was discovered, with the city’s mayor saying that up to 300 victims could be buried on site.
On Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden said “major war crimes” were discovered in Ukraine when the White House announced new sanctions against Russia’s largest financial institutions and a number of individuals associated with the Kremlin, including the two adult daughters of Russia’s Kremlin. President Vladimir Putin.