#BREAKING: President Obama signs executive order “blocking property of certain persons contributing to the situation in Ukraine” and threatening security. The White House says the U.S. is prepared to consider additional steps and sanctions as necessary depending on how Ukraine situation develops. (@Reuters) This comes as the Crimean parliament overwhelmingly votes to become a part of Russia.
The Obama administration did not say how many people were subject to the visa bans or reference their nationality. However, the targets described as “officials and individuals” are believed to be Russians held responsible for the week-old occupation of Crimea.
The White House said the visa restrictions reflected “policy decision to deny visas to those responsible for or complicit in threatening the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine” and was in addition to visa denials for figures close to the government of former president Victor Yanukovych, over oppression of protesters.
The president’s press secretary, Jay Carney, said the additional executive order “authorises sanctions on individuals and entities responsible for activities undermining democratic processes or institutions in Ukraine”. He said those included: “threatening the peace, security, stability, sovereignty, or territorial integrity of Ukraine; contributing to the misappropriation of state assets of Ukraine; or purporting to assert governmental authority over any part of Ukraine without authorization from the Ukrainian government in Kiev”. Source: Guardian