Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

China's growth slows to lowest level since 2009

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Broken promises: UK filmmaker on fate of unaccompanied minors in Calais

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Cameroon's constitutional court hears post-election litigation

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'Johnny lives!' Posthumous Hallyday album reignites fan fever

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

India's #MeToo moment

Read more

THE DEBATE

India's #MeToo moment: Why women are now calling out sexual harassment

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Objective 'Zero Hunger' 2030: Lambert Wilson and UN's FAO tell us how

Read more

FOCUS

Bosnians help out as migrants pour in

Read more

ENCORE!

Masego: Meet the 'TrapHouseJazz' musician getting 55 million hits on YouTube

Read more

Americas

US levies first sanctions on Russia over 2016 election meddling, cyberattacks

© Mikhail Klimentev/Sputnik/AFP | US President Donald Trump chats with Russia's President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders' summit in the Vietnamese city of Danang on November 11, 2017.

Video by Philip CROWTHER

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-03-15

The Trump administration on Thursday imposed sanctions on 19 Russians for alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, including 13 indicted by special counsel Robert Mueller as part of his Russia-related investigation.

Also targeted were five Russian companies, including the Internet Research Agency, which is accused of orchestrating a mass online disinformation campaign to affect the election that Republican Donald Trump won over Democrat Hillary Clinton.

The Treasury Department announced the sanctions amid withering criticism of Trump and his administration for failing to use the congressionally mandated authority to punish Russia for the election interference. Trump himself has been skeptical of the allegations.

The sanctions are the first use of the powers that Congress passed last year in retaliation for Moscow's meddling. The targets include officials working for the Russian military intelligence agency, GRU. Thursday's action freezes any assets the individuals and entities may have in the United States and bar Americans from doing business with them.

>> Putin 'ordered' project to help Trump, harm Clinton, US intelligence says

The department said in a statement that the GRU and Russia's military interfered in the 2016 election and were "directly responsible" for the NotPetya cyberattack that hit businesses across Europe in June 2017.

"The administration is confronting and countering malign Russian cyber activity, including their attempted interference in U.S. elections, destructive cyberattacks, and intrusions targeting critical infrastructure," said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

"These targeted sanctions are a part of a broader effort to address the ongoing nefarious attacks emanating from Russia."

Among those penalized was Yevgeny Prigozhin, who is known as Russian President Vladimir Putin's "chef" and who ran the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, and 12 of the agency's employees. They were included in Mueller's indictment last month.

>> Video: Russia uses intelligence as 'hybrid warfare tactic' on West

The Internet Research Agency "tampered with, altered, or caused a misappropriation of information with the purpose or effect of interfering with or undermining election processes and institutions," specifically the 2016 U.S. presidential race, the department said.

"The IRA created and managed a vast number of fake online personas that posed as legitimate U.S. persons to include grassroots organizations, interest groups, and a state political party on social media," the Treasury Department statement said. "Through this activity, the IRA posted thousands of ads that reached millions of people online."

The sanctions also affect the Russian Federal Security Service, or FSB, and six of its employees, for cyberattacks more broadly, including those targeting Russian journalists, opposition figures, foreign politicians and U.S. officials. The Americans [were] members of the diplomatic corps, the military and White House staffers.

(AP)

Date created : 2018-03-15

  • USA

    Top US spy chief 'resolute' in belief Russia hacked US during election

    Read more

  • USA

    Secret CIA report finds Russia interfered to help Trump win election

    Read more

  • USA - RUSSIA

    Russia hacked voting software firm before US election, report claims

    Read more

COMMENT(S)