U.S. imposes new round of sanctions over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. on Tuesday imposed sanctions on a Belgian involved in procuring electronics for the Russian military, his companies and a group of Belarusian firms and people tied to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control targeted a network led by Belgium-based Hans De Geetere, which included nine entities and five people across Russia, Belgium, Cyprus, Sweden, Hong Kong, and the Netherlands. They are accused of being involved with procuring military-grade equipment for Russia.

Also on Tuesday, the U.S. Justice Department unsealed two indictments against Hans De Geetere and the Commerce Department added him and five firms to its entity list.

U.S. sanctions block access to U.S. property and bank accounts and prevent the targeted people and companies from doing business with Americans.

De Geetere did not respond to an Associated Press request for comment through email.

State Department spokesperson Matt Miller said the U.S. “is committed to working with our allies and partners to expose and degrade networks engaged in Russia’s military procurement” and “will continue to take actions against the Russia’s military-industrial complex to disrupt the Kremlin’s access (to) the tools it uses to perpetuate its illegal war against Ukraine.”

Additionally, U.S. Treasury sanctioned 11 entities and 8 people tied to the Alyaksandr Lukashenka regime for its suppression of Belarusian democratic civil society, corrupt financial enrichment of the Lukashenka family, and complicity in Russia’s war against Ukraine, a Treasury statement reads.

“Today’s action reaffirms our efforts to hold Lukashenka, his family, and his regime accountable for their anti-democratic actions and human rights abuses, both in Belarus and around the world,” said Brian Nelson, Treasury’s under-secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence.

“We will continue to target the Lukashenka regime’s revenue generators, his so-called personal ‘wallets,’ and actors who facilitate Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, coordinate the movement of children from Ukraine to Belarus, and support Lukashenka’s authoritarian regime,” Nelson said.

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