In Moscow sanctions imposed by US President Barack Obama described as the most comprehensive applied to Russia in more than two decades have been brushed off.
Penalties including freezing any assets and a ban on travel into the country targeted eleven Russian and Ukrainian officials blamed for Russia’s military incursion into Crimea.
“Neither myself nor my family have accounts or real estate abroad, outside the Russian Federation. I have citizenship of the Russian Federation and no other one. Therefore these sort of sanctions look more than strange to me. But OK we’ll get through it. History will put everything it its place. I am convinced we are on the right track,” said Yelina Mizulina, a deputy in Russia’s State Duma who is on the list.
Deputy prime minister Dimitry Rogozin who is also included responded on Twitter saying: “Comrade Obama and what will you do with those who have neither accounts or property abroad. Or did you not think of that?”
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov accused the US of a “pathological unwillingness to acknowledge reality.”
From Washington there were hints they could target President Vladimir Putin.
“We’re not going to rule out individuals or rule out action except to say there will be costs imposed on Russia, additional costs imposed on Russia, if Russia does not change direction here when it comes to how it is handling the situation in Ukraine,” said Jay Carney, White House spokesman
The European Union – like the US – left open the possibility of imposing harsher economic penalties on Moscow. Following a meeting of EU foreign ministers the bloc imposed sanctions on 21 people in Russia and Crimea.