“In the context of response to the constantly imposed anti-Russian sanctions by the United States and in connection with incoming requests about the personal composition of our national ‘stop list,’ the Russian Foreign Ministry publishes a list of American citizens who are permanently banned from entering the Russian Federation,” the Foreign Ministry said in a news release.
Some of those mentioned in Saturday’s list, including Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, were sanctioned in March and barred from entering Russia.
The list appears to include major officials from the Biden administration, such as Harris, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and former White House press secretary Jen Psaki. The president’s son, Hunter Biden, is also named, as is former secretary of state Hillary Clinton.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment early Saturday.
One prominent name missing from the list: former president Donald Trump. In fact, the only prominent Trump administration official included in the ban is former secretary of state Mike Pompeo.
The Russian Foreign Ministry’s list of 963 Americans includes many members of Congress, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.).
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is not on the list. Also not listed is Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who delayed a Senate vote on aid for Ukraine last week when he was the only senator to object. The Senate passed the measure this week, and Biden signed the $40 billion package of new military and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine into law on Saturday while visiting Seoul.
The new aid package signals that the United States and its allies are preparing for a longer conflict in the country. The package includes $20 billion in additional military aid that will finance the transfer of advanced weapons systems. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked Biden, adding that the defense assistance is “needed more than ever.”
The list of banned Americans was released at a time when Russia is continuing intense shelling of Severodonetsk, the easternmost city under Ukraine’s control, which looks set to be the war’s next major battlefield. Fighting is underway on the city’s outskirts, and “the Russians are destroying Severodonetsk, like Mariupol,” Luhansk governor Serhiy Haidai said early Saturday. He said six civilians were killed on Friday during Russian…