The UK Government has issued its latest round of sanctions at entities and persons it says have supplied or funded Russia’s military, more than 21-months into Moscow’s invasion of neighbouring Ukraine, during which it has lost thousands of pieces of equipment and sustained up to 400,000 casualties.
In a statement on 6 December 2023, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office and National Crime Agency revealed that 46 new sanctions had been placed, including on businesses in Belarus, China, Serbia, Turkey, the UAE, and Uzbekistan “who continue to support Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine”.
With the inclusion of new corporate entities in China, Serbia, and Uzbekistan, the UK had “now taken action against over 30 third-country entities supporting Russia’s war efforts”, the statement continued.
The updated sanctions list contains Russian weapons manufacturers and defence as well as three actors supporting the Wagner Group network and four operators of so-called ‘shadow fleet’ vessels used by Russia to soften the blow of oil-related sanctions imposed by the UK alongside G7 partners.
The UK stated that the measures would “disrupt [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s ability to equip his military through third-party supply chains in Belarus, China, Serbia, Turkey, the UAE, and Uzbekistan”.
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According to the UK Government, the following companies have been sanctioned for supporting the Russian war in Ukraine: JSC Display Design Bureau, a Belarusian defence organisation; Serbian company Avio Chem; Uzbekistan entity Mvizion, Turkish entity Smart Trading Limited; and three Chinese entities – Asia Pacific Links Limited, Sinno Electronics Co. Limited, and Xinghua Co. Limited.
In addition, the UK had sanctioned the Rusich military group, a private Russian company it says is active in Ukraine.
In the UAE, four shipping entities based in the emirate have been sanctioned by the UK Government in relation to oil shipments involving Russia.
Sanctions Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “Today’s sanctions will hit Putin where it hurts, damaging Russian defence systems, and cracking down on illegal supply chains propping up Russia’s war machine.”
UK outlines scope of Ukraine training provision
Also on 6 December, the UK’s Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) outlined the extensive network of training sites being used by Ukrainian forces with UK military trainers.
A total of six defence training estate sites are currently being used, according to the DIO, spanning a total of 18,410 hectares across different parts of the UK. The sites have been adapted where needed to reflect the battlefields of Ukraine, including Russian trench systems and extensive fields of barbed wire.
According to the DIO around 30,000 Ukrainian military personnel have so far passed through the UK training programme, under Operation Interflex.