US sanctions close Putin associates

By: From Wire Reports
By: From Wire Reports

WASHINGTON (AP) - New U.S. sanctions against Russia include President Vladimir Putin's longtime associate and chief of staff, his close friends, some of the richest men in the country and the head of Russian Railways.

President Barack Obama is expanding economic sanctions against Moscow, targeting 20 individuals inside and outside the government as well as a Russian bank that provides them support.

The Treasury Department says among those sanctioned is Sergei Ivanov, one of Putin's closest associates. Also being hit are a private bank owned by Yuri Kovalchuk, who is considered to be Putin's banker; and two life-long Putin friends who have become multibillionaires during his presidency.

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