Russian counter-sanctions hit UK politicians and media

Cameron, Starmer and Piers Morgan join the previously sanctioned Johnson and Truss

Moscow on Monday blacklisted 39 British officials, consulting executives and journalists as part of retaliatory measures against London’s “hostile course aimed at demonization” of Russia. Former Prime Minister David Cameron was at the top of the list, which also includes Labour leader Keir Starmer as well as prominent members of the Liberal Democrats, SNP and Greens. At the bottom of the list are journalists, among whom is television personality Piers Morgan. 

The “pernicious actions of Great Britain in planting Russophobia, spreading false information about our country and supporting the neo-Nazi regime in Kiev will receive an adequate and decisive response” from Russia, the foreign ministry said in a statement.

“The choice in favor of confrontation is a conscious decision of the British political establishment, which bears all responsibility for the consequences,” the ministry said.

Cameron leads the blacklist, followed by former defense secretary – and later NATO secretary-general – George Robertson, now a life peer and a member of the House of Lords. 

In addition to Starmer, several of Labour’s shadow secretaries – David Lammy, Lisa Nandy and Nick Thomas-Symonds – made the list as well. 

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The blacklist also includes four members of the Scottish cabinet and three more members of Holyrood – two Greens and a leader of the Liberal Democrats – along with several defense ministry officials and Foreign Office’s spokeswoman Helen Alice Bower-Easton. 

Bringing up the rear are journalists, starting with Times columnist David Aaronovich and Guardian news editor Dan Sabbagh, through Daily Telegraph’s Europe editor James Crisp, Sunday Times’ political editor Caroline Wheeler, Sky News head John Ryley and BBC news director Jonathan Munro. Economist deputy editor Edward Carr and Sun military columnist Jerome Starkey were also blacklisted, alongside ITV and BBC producer Robert Peston and BBC presenter Huw Edwards. Morgan, listed as “ITV presenter,” was the penultimate name on the list.

They join PM Boris Johnson, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, and eleven other British officials who were sanctioned in mid-April. The “stop list” bars them from entering Russia.

Given London’s “destructive desire to keep spinning the wheel of sanctions under far-fetched and absurd pretexts,” the work on expanding the “stop list” will continue, added the foreign ministry.

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