Britain on Tuesday (February 22) slapped sanctions on five Russian banks and three men, including Gennady Timchenko, who have close links to Vladimir Putin after the Kremlin chief ordered the deployment of troops to two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the Kremlin was laying the ground for a full-scale invasion of Ukraine and that the world should now brace for the next stage of Putin’s plan.
Johnson told parliament that five banks – Rossiya, IS Bank, GenBank, Promsvyazbank and the Black Sea Bank – were being sanctioned, along with three people – Timchenko, Igor Rotenberg and Boris Rotenberg.
“This is the first tranche, the first barrage of what we are prepared to do,” Johnson said.
Hundreds of billions of dollars have flowed into London and Britain’s overseas territories from Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, and London has become the Western city of choice for the super-wealthy of Russia and other former Soviet republics.