One of the biggest fears of anyone traveling to another country is being denied entry by immigration. Well, that’s what will happen to a list of bigwigs if they try to go to Russia visit the president Vladimir Poutine or discover Red Square, one of Moscow’s most famous sights.
The Russian Foreign Ministry released this Saturday (21) an updated list of 1,000 Americans who are permanently banned from entering the country.
This list is seen as a symbolic measure in response to the harsh sanctions imposed by Western countries for the invasion of Ukraine in February.
Who got in and who got away from Putin’s list
There is no doubt that the first name on the list of persona non grata Putin’s is that of US President Joe Biden.
The current House leader had already been banned from visiting Russia since mid-March and has now joined the government’s updated list. Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, managed to escape.
During his administration, Trump claimed that US-Russian relations were at their best – he even said he was a “friend” of Putin.
After Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, the Republican was full of praise for the Russian president, saying he “was a man of courage”.
In addition to Biden, other US government officials are also banned from Russia: Secretary of State (head of diplomacy), Antony Blinken; Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin; and Army General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Same party for Zuckerberg and George Soros
Putin’s updated list also includes US Vice President Kamala Harris, as well as Biden’s son Hunter – embroiled in controversy under the Trump administration, which accused him of shady dealings with Ukraine.
Hillary Clinton, former US Secretary of State and First Lady, will also be banned if she tries to visit Russia. The Democrat was defeated by Trump in the 2016 election amid suspicions of Russian election interference in favor of the Republican.
Putin hasn’t even forgiven actor Morgan Freeman – the Russian ministry says he was banned for “inciting Russophobia”.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and billionaire investor George Soros are also on the list. Soros’ support for liberal causes and groups in the former Soviet bloc has made him a bogeyman for Russia and right-wing conspiracy theorists.
Trump wasn’t the only one
Trump, however, was not the only former US president to escape Putin’s wrath. Barack Obama is also not on the list, as is Trump’s deputy, Mike Pence.
But Pence’s brother, Rep. Greg Pence, is banned along with 211 fellow Republicans in the House of Representatives and Senate — as well as 224 Democratic members of both houses of Congress.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Democrat, is on the list – this week she was banned from receiving Communion by the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco over her support for the right to abortion.
Putin also remembered the Canadians
It’s not just Americans who have benefited from Putin’s banishment decision. In a separate statement, the Russian Foreign Ministry banned 26 Canadians.
Among them are Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife, Sophie Grégoire; Air Force Commander Eric Jean Kenny; and Army Commander Lt. Gen. Jocelyn Paul.
On Tuesday, Canada passed a law banning more than 1,000 Russians and Putin allies from entering the country.
*With information from CNBC
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