New sanctions mark one year since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Line of Defence Magazine - Update

New Zealand implements new sanctions against Russia.

One year since Russia launched its illegal war against Ukraine, Aotearoa New Zealand’s resolve to stand against Putin’s war is undiminished says Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta.

“Over the last year, this conflict has cost thousands of innocent lives, uprooted families, transformed once peaceful cities into battlegrounds, and destroyed livelihoods,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

“Today [24 February] we have announced one of the largest rounds of sanctions against Russia to date, a further demonstration of Aotearoa New Zealand’s strong condemnation of Russia’s illegal action.

“These new sanctions against 87 Russian individuals is our second largest round of sanctions yet. The group includes political actors who have strategic relevance to Russia, and proximity to Putin. 

“It also includes Members of the Central Election Commission of the Russian Federation, who sought to legitimise the attack on Ukraine’s sovereignty through sham referenda in the illegally annexed regions of Ukraine. 

“The military personnel we have chosen to sanction have had active roles in the conflict. 

“As with our previous sanctions, these automatically extend to relatives and associates of listed persons.

These latest measures complement the New Zealand Government’s broader response providing military, humanitarian, legal and financial support to Ukraine.

“The extent of the measures taken by Aotearoa New Zealand to condemn Russia’s illegal invasion, and support Ukraine’s self-defence, is unprecedented, and our contributions have been welcomed by Ukraine, and our international partners,” Nanaia Mahuta said. 

“Russia’s actions continue to have implications for global peace, security, and economic stability, which impact Aotearoa New Zealand.

“Ukraine’s self-defence is also a fight to defend core principles that New Zealanders hold dear: territorial integrity; freedom fundamental human rights; and an international rules-based system that we rely on for our peace and prosperity. 

“On March 9 2022, only weeks after Russia invaded Ukraine, Parliament unanimously passed the Russia Sanctions Act, enabling Aotearoa New Zealand to respond to Russia’s actions in a practical way and join global efforts to undermine Russia’s war machine. Since then we have sanctioned over 1,000 individuals, over 350 entities, and implemented comprehensive trade measures.

“A year on from Russia’s senseless invasion, our call to President Putin remains the same.  We continue to call on Russia to act consistently its international obligations, cease Russia’s military aggression, withdraw troops and then return to meaningful diplomatic negotiations.” 

More information about sanctions, travel bans, and export controls against Russia and Belarus, as well as diplomatic, military and economic support to Ukraine, can be found on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade website.