UK sanctions over alleged Putin circle

UK sanctions over alleged Putin circle

The restrictions have targeted individuals alleged to be the inner circle of the Russian president.

The new round of sanctions on what it describes as the inner circle of Vladimir Putin was unveiled by the UK on Friday. The total number of Russians sanctioned by the UK since the beginning of the Ukraine conflict has gone up to more than 1,000.

The latest restrictions include travel bans, asset freezes, travel bans and other transport sanctions. Despite his official record of modest assets, the Russian president relies on his network of family, childhood friends and selected elite who have benefited from his rule and in turn supports his lifestyle, according to the Foreign Office.

The list includes the 2004 Russian gymnastics icon and Athens all-around champion Alina Kabaeva. The Foreign Office put it on the assumption that the retired gymnast has a close relationship with Putin. There is no actual evidence to back up such claims.

Russia attacked the neighboring state in late February due to Ukraine failing to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. The German and French protocols were designed to give the breakaway regions special status within the Ukrainian state.

The Kremlin has demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join the US-led NATO military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked and has denied that it was planning to retake the two republics by force.