Joe Biden Announces Harsh Sanctions: “Vladimir Putin Will Be A Pariah On The International Scene”
The US president meets with the G7 and explains the punishments against Russia, among which its exit from the Swift banking system is not found at the moment.
US President Joe Biden has announced on Twitter that the G7 leaders, during their virtual meeting on Thursday, agreed to impose “devastating” sanctions on Russia, in response to the invasion of Ukraine. “We support the brave Ukrainian people,” the American leader said before addressing the nation.
After the meeting with the G7, Biden said that “Putin is the aggressor, he has chosen this war.” Step followed he has spoken of sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. They will be limited to the financial sector, to the export of technology that can be used in the defense, aerospace, and naval sectors, and to some personalities of the Vladimir Putin regime. They will not include the expulsion of Russia from the international Swift payment system, which would mean removing that country from the international financial system.
Nor will they cover the energy sector, which accounts for 30% of Russian GDP, 50% of state income, and 60% of Russian exports. Nor will they affect the personal accounts of Vladimir Putin, who has an estimated fortune of 180 billion euros, part of it outside Russia. The US and its allies will also release part of their strategic oil reserves to compensate for the rise in that raw material due to the invasion of Ukraine.
In the military field, the US will make its troops in Europe advance towards the countries closest to Russia and Ukraine, but it flatly rules out its intervention in the war. Washington has also not reported whether it is giving additional weapons to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, although everything seems to indicate that this is not the case, and that the collaboration is limited to sending them intelligence on the unstoppable advance of the invaders. Meanwhile, looking ahead, more measures are being considered, such as Russia’s exclusion from the Swift or direct sanctions on Putin.
Biden’s press conference coincided with the acknowledgment by Western spy agencies that Ukraine’s capital, Kiev, is likely to fall to invaders tomorrow or the day after . Biden declared that the new sanctions will be as damaging to that country “as bullets and tanks”, and recalled that the ruble has plummeted a spectacular 35% since the invasion began.
Biden unambiguously condemned the invasion, but on the ground of practical realities, the measures imposed by the US are not going to affect Putin’s calculation. Five of the largest Russian banks will see their activities in the US banned and their assets frozen. The borrowing capacity of large corporations in that country, such as the gas giant Gazprom, will be severely limited, since they will only be able to issue short-term debt. And a number of Putin’s close associates will see their assets frozen. In total, around 2.5 trillion dollars (2.3 trillion euros) of Russian money will be tied up. In total, 50% of Russian technology imports will be cancelled. But all these measures were already expected. The sanctions did not make Putin give up the invasion. And they’re not going to change your mind.
“America stands up to thugs,” Biden has said. “Putin has committed an assault on the principles of global peace,” continued the American leader, assuring that in the coming weeks and months he will help the people of Ukraine.
“Putin will be a pariah on the international stage,” Biden has threatened. “Putin wants an empire in any way possible. He has a sinister vision for the future of our world,” she continued.
“Our allies and the United States will emerge from this stronger,” he concluded before giving way to questions from journalists. “His ambitions are totally contrary to where the rest of the world is,” he told reporters.
The group of the seven most important democratic economies in the world (G-7) has condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine and put on record after the virtual summit held this Thursday under the German presidency that Russian President Vladimir Putin has put himself on the wrong side of the history.
In a statement released by the current presidency after the meeting of the leaders of the US, Canada, Japan, France, the United Kingdom and Italy, in addition to Germany, the G-7 condemns “President Vladimir Putin for his constant refusal to participate in a diplomatic process to address European security issues, despite our repeated offers.
The Group thus lashes out at Putin for invading Ukraine despite diplomatic efforts by the West to prevent war. “President Putin has reintroduced war on the European continent. He has placed himself on the wrong side of history,” they said in a statement after a meeting chaired by Germany.
They also condemned Moscow for recognizing the breakaway Donetsk and Luhansk regions as independent from Ukraine and reiterated that these regions, along with the Crimean peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014, are “an integral part” of Ukrainian territory.
The G7 powers urged Russia to ensure the safety of OSCE monitors in Ukraine and expressed their commitment to “democracy and its common universal values” , sustainable development and the needs of the international community.
“We are united in the determination to provide common responses to both the challenges of a systemic nature and the immediate crises of our time,” the statement underlined.
Initially, an appearance before the media by Foreign Minister Olaf Scholz had been planned , at the end of the meeting convened from his role as rotating president of the group.
That appointment was later cancelled, due to the face-to-face summit between the leaders of the European Union (EU) that will take place this Thursday in Brussels, in which a package of common sanctions against Russia is expected.
In a television statement before traveling to Brussels, Scholz highlighted the unity of the Atlantic Alliance in defending the eastern flank in the event of Russian aggression. “Putin should not call NATO’s unity into question,” he stressed.
War breaks out between Russia and Ukraine: bombings leave dozens dead, the Russian army takes control of Chernobyl and advances towards Kiev.
The chancellor maintained that Russia’s attack on Ukraine is more than a war, “it is a war that has not been experienced in Europe for 75 years.” Scholz said that Putin wants to start the clock but “time does not turn back. There is no return to the time of the cold war.”
Along with the explicit mention of the Russian invasion, the declaration of the seven leaders expresses the “general” commitment to the defense of democratic systems and multilateralism on issues such as the fight against climate, environment and Covid.