The government of the United Kingdom included the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill in its new list of sanctions on Thursday, citing his support and endorsement of Russian President Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine.
According to the new wave of sanctions released by the U.K. government, Kirill and his allies including Moscow City Duma Sergey Savostyanov and the Volga-Dnepr Group President Alexey Isaykin were involved in corroborating Putin's invasion of Ukraine.
Savostyanov, also a member of Putin's political elite, was sanctioned for his provision and ratification of Putin's war, while Isaykin's company was a Russian transport company employed by the Russian government to use its major air operations to move commodities for supplying the war.
The measures primarily sanctioned Russian Children's Rights Commissioner Maria Lvova-Belova for her alleged role in forcing the adoption and relocation of Ukrainian children which the U.K. called "barbaric treatment of children in Ukraine."
According to the statement, Lvova-Belova allegedly used her power to displace vehemently 2,000 vulnerable children from the Luhansk and Donetsk regions. She had also allegedly organized a new program for the assistance of forced adoptions in Russia.
SANCTIONED: Maria Lvova-Belova for her role in the forced transfer and adoption of Ukrainian children.
— Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (@FCDOGovUK) June 16, 2022
The U.K. condemned Putin's allies for turning a blind eye to the alleged war crimes and their continued support of the brutal attack.
They also sanctioned four Military Colonels from the 64th Separate Motorised Rifle Brigade, a unit suspected of killing, raping, and torturing civilians in Bucha; as well as the members of the Salvation Committee for Peace and Order for collaborating with the Russian army to encourage the invasion of the Kherson Oblast.
The U.K. Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said in the statement that they were after the accomplices and criminals of Putin's war who have caused immense pain in Ukraine, including forced adoptions and child transfers. She said that they will not stop putting pressure on Putin to support Ukraine's success in its fight for freedom and democracy.
Cutting Off Putin's Funds For War
They also wrote in the statement that Putin's hostility extends beyond Ukraine as Russia supplies conflict around the world. For this reason, the U.K. also sanctioned companies that supply airplane parts to the Myanmar Armed Forces. It's also their goal to limit Myanmar's Military Junta to rely on Russian air assets and to obstruct Putin's sales that fund his war machine.
The U.K. sanctions came after the recommendation of Amnesty International published in their article "Bullets rained from the sky: War crimes and displacement in eastern Myanmar" to suspend immediately all direct and indirect supply of Russian arms in Myanmar.
The measures enforced on the individuals listed include an asset freeze that would prohibit financial or economic resources for the benefit of sanctioned individuals; a travel ban that denied permission to enter or remain in the UK; and travel sanctions that criminalize any Russian aircraft to fly or land in the UK, as well as Russian ships to park at U.K. ports.