The United States on Friday warned it could impose sanctions on people, countries and companies that supply Russia with ammunition or support its military-industrial complex, as Washington seeks to increase pressure on Moscow over the war in Ukraine.
The Deputy Minister of Finance, Wally Adeyemo, at the first ever gathering with officials of 32 countries to discuss sanctions against Russia, made it clear that Washington is ready to take action against those outside the United States who evade Washington’s sanctions.
Officials at the meeting, which included representatives from EU countries, Canada and South Korea, discussed further steps planned to target Russia’s military-industrial complex and the effects of several sanctions packages imposed by Washington and its partners over Moscow’s incursion in Ukraine, which killed or injured thousands.
The Treasury Department also warned that Washington was ready to impose sanctions on those supplying ammunition to Russia, as well as private ones military companies or paramilitary groups that participate in or support Russia war in Ukraine.
In addition, the Treasury, Commerce and State departments issued a warning outlining the actions that have been taken against Russia’s military-industrial complex and noting the risks facing those who provide material support for Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.
The warning said that by limiting Russia’s access to modern goods, technology and services, Washington and its partners have affected Russia’s ability to replace weapons, including more than 6,000 pieces of military equipment destroyed during the war.
The United States was also to warn at the meeting that Russia is “using ammunition at an unsustainable rate” and is turning to countries like Iran and North Korea for supplies and equipment, including drones, missiles and artillery munitions, according to a copy of the presentation by Morgan Muir, the deputy -director of national intelligence for mission integration, seen by Reuters.
Export control measures imposed by Washington and a 37-nation coalition have had an impact, according to the presentation, with Russia’s defense industry relying on imported microelectronics and other parts. The critical shortage of bearings is undermining the production of tanks, aircraft, submarines and other military systems, the presentation noted.
Muir also had to warn the meeting that Russian intelligence services are seeking to illegally acquire Western technology and parts prohibited to Russia under US measures.
The network used to acquire the technology included oligarchs, front persons and front companies and targeted primarily Europe and North America, according to the presentation.
Earlier this year, Washington imposed sweeping new restrictions on supplies to Russia of American and foreign goods if they are made with American equipment or technology, in an effort to cripple Russia’s military and industrial sectors.
The control is mainly aimed at the Russian defense, space and maritime sectors. They also target Russia’s energy production sector, as well as luxury goods used by Russian elites.
Restrictions by Washington and its allies have cut imports of semiconductors critical to Russian weapons by 70%, according to the warning. As a result, Russia’s production of hypersonic ballistic missiles has nearly ground to a halt, and car production has fallen by three-quarters compared to last year.
Asked how much more Western allies could do to increase pressure on Russia, one European finance official said: “We can expand the list of people under sanctions. We can expand the number of goods that have export restrictions.