April 12, 2024

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The White House targets Russia with “major sanctions” in response to Navalny's death

The White House targets Russia with “major sanctions” in response to Navalny's death

John Kirby said: “We will announce a major sanctions package.”

The White House will announce a new “major sanctions” package on Friday to “hold Russia accountable” for the death of Alexei Navalny, a longtime Russian opposition politician and critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, national security communications adviser John Kirby said.

“Whatever story the Russian government decides to tell the world, it is clear that President Putin and his government are responsible for Mr. Navalny’s death,” Kirby said Tuesday morning. In response to the President [Joe] At Biden's direction, we will announce a major sanctions package on Friday of this week to hold Russia accountable for what happened to Mr. Navalny.

Kirby did not go into detail about what the new sanctions package would include, but he noted that the sanctions would also work to hold Russia accountable for its ongoing war with Ukraine.

He added: “I think what you will see in this package that we will be announcing on Friday is a set of sanctions – a system designed not only to hold Mr. Putin accountable for the two-year-old war in Ukraine, but also specifically supplemented with additional sanctions.” In connection with the death of Mr. Navalny.”

Last week, Navalny died in prison at the age of 47. Shortly after news of Navalny's death, Biden placed the blame squarely on Putin.

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“We don’t know exactly what happened, but there is no doubt that Navalny’s death was the result of something Putin and his friends did,” Biden said.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said last week that “Russia is responsible for this.”

On Tuesday, Navalny's widow, Yulia Navalnaya, called for the return of the remains so that they could be “buried with dignity.”

She posted a video in which she claimed that Navalny's body had been kept from the family because he had been killed, possibly by poison.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday that the allegations were “unfounded, unsupported and insulting.”

Russia is already subject to severe sanctions: sanctions signed by Biden in December targeted financial institutions that indirectly allowed Russia to continue building its military arsenal amid its aggression against Ukraine.

ABC News' Kevin Shalvey and Sarah Beth Hensley contributed to this report.