Putin should 'stand trial' for invasion of Ukraine says Keir Starmer
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The EU and the US prepared to impose new sanctions on Moscow on Wednesday over civilian killings in Ukraine as the West moved to crippled Russia’s war effort. EU leaders were meeting in Brussels to consider new measures against Russia the day after Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of committing war crimes in an address to the United Nations.
The proposed list of sanctions being drawn up includes dozens of individuals including political figures, tycoons and their family members, and several propagandists.
Putin’s daughters are said to be under consideration, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cited people familiar with the plan.
If they are included in the latest tranche of sanctions, both Maria Vorontsova and Katerina Tikhonova would be subjected to asset freezes and travel bans.
EU ambassadors are expected to sign off the proposals on Wednesday, with the US predicted to announced measures against the pair later this week.
Sanctioning Putin’s daughters is thought to be a largely symbolic move as it is unclear whether either have significant assets outside Russia.
The aim would instead be to get the Russian leader’s attention by singling out his closest family members.
Putin has always kept his family out of the media, meaning little is known about Ms Vorontsova, 36, and Ms Tikhonova, 35.
The lives of his daughters are shrouded in secrecy, with the Kremlin never having confirmed their names or released pictures of them.
Putin disclosed some details in 2015, when he said that both women graduated from Russian universities and speak multiple languages.
Both are the children of his ex-wife, Lyudmila Putina, who he divorced in 2013.
Putin’s eldest daughter Ms Vorontsova reportedly runs a healthcare investment company while Ms Tikhonova is thought to be an academic at Moscow State University.
The White House said the fresh sanctions were in part a response to the atrocities committed by Russian troops in Bucha, following reports of Kremlin troops murdering hundreds of civilians.
The US state department said it had credible reports of rape, torture and summary executions carried out by Russian forces as an investigation into possible war crimes gets underway.
Addressing the UN on Tuesday, President Zelensky described the atrocities in Ukraine as “war crimes”.
Mr Zelensky said: “There is not a single crime that they would not commit there.
“The Russians searched for and purposely killed anyone who served our country. They shot and killed women outside their houses. They killed entire families – adults and children – and they tried to burn the bodies.”
Ukrainian authorities are investigating more than 4,4000 incidents related to Russia’s atrocities in Bucha.
Local officials said on Monday that the bodies of 410 civilians have been recovered from towns around the capital Kyiv after Russian troops withdrew from the area.
Ukraine’s prosecutor general Iryna Venediktova said “Russia will be responsible for Bucha in The Hague.”
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The US said the new sanctions coordinated between Washington, G7 economies and the EU will target Russian banks and officials.
Earlier this week, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said Russia’s atrocities in Bucha “cannot and will not be left unanswered”.
The EU is expected to approve its fifth round of sanctions against Moscow on Wednesday, including a ban on coal and any new investment in Russia. Russian ships will also be banned for European ports.
France and Germany also announced on Monday that they would expel Russian diplomats in response to the discoveries in Bucha.
President Zelensky has condemned the limits on existing EU sanctions, particularly Germany’s refusal to permit a ban on imports of Russian natural gas.
Ukraine’s president also slammed the United Nations for failing to rein in Russia and stated that the body should be dissolved if it cannot help halt Russia’s invasion.
He added: “The UN security council exists, and security in the world doesn’t. For anyone.
“The United Nations is currently unable to carry out the functions for which it was created. And only one state is to blame for this: Russia.”
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