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While displaying its version of counter-sanctions due to the barrage of European sanctions on her due to the conflicts with Ukraine, Russia has on Monday announced that it would be blacklisting 39 British citizens, including Labour Party leader Keir Starmer and the former prime minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron.
The reason is not far fetched from the fact that London has also been one of Kyiv’s most vocal supporters after President Vladimir Putin sent troops to Ukraine on February 24.
Russia’s foreign ministry said the citizens listed, including journalists, “contribute to the hostile course of London aimed at the demonisation of our country and its international isolation”.
“The choice in favour of confrontation is the conscious decision of the British political establishment, which bears all responsibility for the consequences,” the ministry added.
Moscow has banned several dozen British citizens — mostly politicians and journalists — from entering Russia since the start of its military campaign in Ukraine. The new additions include several Labour MPs, Scottish politicians and members of the House of Lords.
Among the media are the head of the BBC’s newsgathering Jonathan Munro, TV presenter Piers Morgan and BBC News presenter Huw Edward.
A Finnish official has mocked Russia’s reports that it is currently destroying some of Ukraine’s United States-supplied HIMARS missiles while describing the report as probably “wishful thinking” due to the capabilities of the rocket launching systems.
“Russia said it destroyed two HIMARS. This has not been confirmed and is likely wishful thinking, as the HIMARS are capable of operating beyond the range of Russian artillery, and Russia has no air superiority,” Ville Cantell, director of the Finnish Foreign Ministry’s Sustainable Development and Trade Communications unit, tweeted Monday.
Russia had on Monday reported that some of its forces had destroyed two U.S.-made HIMARS in Ukraine, adding to the four systems it previously said it took out.
Newsweek reached out to Cantell via the Finnish Foreign Ministry’s Sustainable Development and Trade Communications unit to verify which of Russia’s reports on destroying HIMARS he was referring to.
The U.S. HIMARS, an acronym for M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, have been touted as a “game changer” in Ukraine’s fight against Russia’s invasion, which began in late February. The U.S. has sent 16 in total to Ukraine, four of which arrived Monday, according to an announcement from Oleksii Reznikov, Ukraine’s defense minister.