War in Ukraine

Australia to punish 30 pro-Russia Ukraine invasion propagandists with sanctions

How Australia plans to punish Putin after Russia annexed four regions in Ukraine following ‘sham’ referendums

  • Australia puts financial sanctions and travel bans on pro-Putin messengers
  • Penalties apply to those trying to ‘legitimise’ Russia’s claim on Ukrainian regions
  • It is the latest of tit-for-tat bans imposed by the two nations on each other
  • Russia has banned many Australian politicians, business and media figures

Australia will impose further financial sanctions and travel bans on almost 30 Russia-backed separatists and senior officials following Moscow’s move to annex swathes of Ukrainian territory.

The Albanese government on Sunday announced another 28 people would be penalised for trying to legitimise Russian attempts to claim several regions in Ukraine through ‘sham’ referendums in the war-torn nation.

In a statement, the government said claims to legitimacy for the referendums held in Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia were baseless.

The government of Anthony Albanese has moved to place financial sanctions and travel bans on 30 more of those 'legitimising' Russia's invasion of Ukraine

The government of Anthony Albanese has moved to place financial sanctions and travel bans on 30 more of those ‘legitimising’ Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Fighting continue to drag on in the Ukraine after Russia launched its full-scale invasion of the country in February

Fighting continue to drag on in the Ukraine after Russia launched its full-scale invasion of the country in February

‘The areas of Ukraine currently occupied by Russian forces are the sovereign territory of Ukraine, no sham referendum will change this,’ Foreign Minister Penny Wong said.

The announcement of Russian rule over more than 15 per cent of Ukraine – the biggest annexation in Europe since World War II – has been roundly rejected as illegal.

The United States, Britain and Canada have already announced new sanctions but they seem to be doing little to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Australia has also backed Ukraine’s claim Russia has violated the UN’s genocide convention, filing a supporting intervention in the International Court of Justice.

The government continues to call on Russia to withdraw its military forces from Ukraine in compliance with the International Court of Justice’s binding order from March this year.

Australia will continue to work closely with the international community to ‘impose high costs’ on those responsible for the invasion.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin has defied all international cries of condemnation during the brutal invasion of Ukraine

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has defied all international cries of condemnation during the brutal invasion of Ukraine

Speaking from Hawaii alongside his US counterpart, Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles, who is also the defence minister, said the government was considering how it could support Ukraine in the long-term.

‘To put Ukraine in a position where ultimately this conflict can be resolved on its terms, and that has to be our objective,’ he said.

Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus said the intervention was Australia’s commitment to upholding international law.

‘We stand with Ukraine in bringing these proceedings against Russia before the International Court of Justice,’ he said.

Ukraine has called on Australia to provide further military equipment to back its attempt to repel Russian forces.

Russian president Vladimir Putin has threatened to use all means at the country’s disposal to defend what it claims as its territory, widely interpreted as a reference to his nation’s nuclear arsenal.

Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes, here seen with wife Annie, is one of the notable Australians who is on Russia's list of sanctions

Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes, here seen with wife Annie, is one of the notable Australians who is on Russia’s list of sanctions

The US has said it would respond decisively to any use of nuclear weapons.

In September Russia added another 41 names to its already lengthy list of Australians banned from entering the country in response to perceived hostility to the Putin’s Ukraine invasion.

A notable inclusion was chief SBS Russia correspondent Ben Lewis, who tweeted that he was ‘surprised it took this long TBH’.

Other notable media figures who have been banned include Liz Hayes, Stan Grant, Patricia Karvelas  and Andrew Bolt. 

News Corp heir Lachlan Murdoch, here seen with wife Sarah, is one of the notable Australians who is on Russia's list of sanctions

News Corp heir Lachlan Murdoch, here seen with wife Sarah, is one of the notable Australians who is on Russia’s list of sanctions

Russia has previously banned prime minister Anthony Albanese along with his predecessor Scott Morrison along with other ministers from both governments and even some state premiers. 

Among some other notable people banned are billionaire mining magnates Gina Rinehart and Andrew ‘Twiggy Forrest along with News Corp heir Lachlan Murdoch.

Atlassian co-founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar, property tycoon Harry Triguboff and Rio Tinto Iron Ore chief Simon Trott are also locked out of Russia. 


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