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Live updates: Russia’s war in Ukraine


Live updates: Russia’s war in Ukraine

The United Kingdom will ban the import of Russian diamonds as part of its latest sanctions against Moscow, Downing Street announced Friday. 

Imports of Russian-origin copper, aluminum and nickel will also be banned under the legislation, which will be introduced later this year, the prime minister’s office said in a statement. 

The Russian diamond industry was worth $4 billion in exports in 2021, according to Downing Street.

Alongside the measures, the UK government is also preparing new individual designations targeting an additional 86 people and companies from Russian President Vladimir Putin’s military industrial complex as well as those involved in key revenue streams such as energy, metals and shipping. They include people who are “supporting the Kremlin to actively undermine the impact of existing sanctions,” the statement said. 

“As today’s sanctions announcements demonstrate, the G7 remains unified in the face of the threat from Russia and steadfast in our support for Ukraine,” Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said.

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To date, the UK has sanctioned over 1,500 individuals and entities, freezing more than £18 billion ($22.3 billion) of assets in the UK, according to Downing Street. 

The announcement comes as British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak meets with leaders for the first day of the G7 summit in Hiroshima on Friday.

EU sanctions: Additionally, the European Union will also restrict trade of Russian diamonds, European Council President Charles Michel said Friday.

“Russian diamonds are not forever,” Michel said on the sidelines of the G7 summit in Hiroshima.

The EU will also continue its effort to cut off critical supplies from Russia, he added.

A senior EU official said Thursday the EU is “confident” that a plan for sanctioning Russian diamonds will be put in place at the G7 meeting, which kicks off Friday in Japan.

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