It’s becoming more and more difficult for Putin to fund Ukrainian war every single day, says WH

PTI, Apr 6, 2022, 8:13 AM IST

It is becoming more and more difficult for Russian President Vladimir Putin to fund his war in Ukraine, the White House said Tuesday adding that more tough sanctions are to be announced on Wednesday.

“What we are doing and we’re already seeing effectively happen is the financial system in Russia is near the brink of collapse. I mean, they’re projecting 15 per cent inflation, a contraction of 15 percent in their economy. Private sector businesses are pulling out of the country. It is more and more difficult for President Putin to fund this war every single day. That has an impact,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters at her daily news conference.

“But what we’re also doing is providing a historic amount of military and security assistance, which is what they’ve been using effectively over the last few weeks to fight this war and push back the Russians,” she said.

At the same time, Psaki reiterated that the United States is not calling for regime change. “That has not been our policy and continues not to be our policy. But again, our view is that he is a war criminal and he is somebody who should be looked at by the international system which evaluates war crimes,” she said.

The White House is planning another set of sanctions on Russia. This is likely to be announced on Wednesday.

“In coordination with the G-7 and the EU, an additional sweeping package of sanction measures that will impose costs on Russia, send it further down the road of economic, financial, and technological isolation,” she said.

This will include a ban on all new investment in Russia and increased sanctions on financial institutions and state owned enterprises in Russia and sanctions on Russian government officials and their family members. These measures will degrade key instruments of Russian state power and pose acute and immediate economic harm on Russia and hold accountable the Russian kleptocracy that funds and supports Putin’s war, she said.

The US is working to rally the world and taking steps to hold Russia accountable. “It does not mean they’re identical. It doesn’t mean they’ll all happen on the exact same timeline. But that is what we’re continuing to work to do from here,” she said.

Responding to a question, Psaki said the US is coordinating with the G-7 and the EU, which is about 50 per cent of the global economy, which is still a significant unified entity in holding Russia accountable. “In our conversations, obviously, we had our Deputy National Security Advisor travel to India recently to convey the implementation of our own sanctions,” she said when told that major countries like China, India and Brazil are not participating in the sanctions.

“Our expectation is not only that other countries will abide by but that they will also be a constructive part of holding Russia accountable,” she said.

Observing that Putin “is a pariah,” Psaki said that this has all been the result of a coordinated global effort to put in place economic and financial consequences that are having an incredible effect.

“In addition, we have made it much more difficult because of export controls and other limitations on the type of materials that President Putin and the Russians can purchase to build the technological systems and capacities to fight wars in addition to funding wars. Those are all components that had been the result of the efforts to date,” she said.

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