The United States on Friday announced sanctions against two Russians accused of misinformation and interference in the US election, including funding pro-Russian propaganda and supporting a gubernatorial candidate .
“The individuals and entities named today played various roles in Russia's attempts to manipulate and destabilize the United States and its allies and partners, including Ukraine,” the US Treasury Department said in a statement.
“Free and fair elections are a pillar of American democracy that must be protected from outside influence,” said Treasury Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson, quoted in this release.
These sanctions are distinct from those taken by Washington and its allies against Russia since the invasion of Ukraine in February. “conspiracy to recruit agents for the service of Russia”.
The Muscovite is accused of having, between 2014 and 2022, “recruited political groups” in Florida, Georgia, and California, under the supervision of the Russian intelligence services (FSB) and with the support of the Kremlin, according to a press release of the United States Department of Justice.
“Ionov provided financial support to these groups, ordered them to publish pro-Russian propaganda, coordinated and financed the direct action of these groups in the United States to promote Russian interests and coordinated coverage of this activity in the Russian media”, it is detailed.
He is also accused of having collaborated with an operation already sanctioned by Washington for interference in the 2016 US presidential election, this time “on the feasibility of directly supporting a candidate in a gubernatorial election” in 2022 , details the Treasury.
“In mid-2021, Ionov endeavored to disseminate and promote disinformation that would influence the American electoral process and exacerbate the sociopolitical division within the United States”, it is specified. .
He is the president and founder of the Russian Anti-Globalization Movement, as well as Ionov Transkontinental and the website STOP-Imperialism, “which presents itself as a +global news agency+”, in English and Russian , underlines the Treasury. These three entities are also targeted by the economic sanctions.
The United States has also targeted Natalya Burlinova, and her “Center for the Support and Development of Creative Diplomacy of Public Initiative”, or Picreadi, which “depends on (Russian) state funding,” the Treasury says.