New Zealand has joined the ranks of countries seeking to punish Russia over its attack on Ukraine, imposing the first of what it said would likely be multiple waves of sanctions against President Vladimir Putin and other officials and entities.
Governor-General Cindy Kiro formally signed off on the sanctions on Friday. Putin and a dozen of his key supporters are now banned from traveling to New Zealand or having assets in the country. They’re also prohibited from having ships or aircraft dock or land in New Zealand.
In addition to the Russian president, the sanctions target Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, former President Dmitry Medvedev, FSB chief Alexander Bortnikov and Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu. New Zealand also banned hundreds of other Russians from traveling to the country, but no one with major holdings in the South Pacific nation was included on the sanctions list.
“This is just the start, with more sanctions coming over the next few weeks,” Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta said in a statement. “We expect to progressively announce more substantive sanctions as officials work through the appropriate process required under legislation.”
The first round of sanctions also targets 19 entities, including state-backed Promsvyazbank (PSB), banning it from having assets in New Zealand or providing services to its citizens.
New Zealanders are prohibited from dealing with technology firms Integral and Research and Production, military industrial giants UralVagonZavod and Almaz-Antey Corporation, as well as nearly a dozen of various Donbass militia groups and organizations.
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