May 30, 2023, 7:30am EDT
North America

How Russia is trying to crack down against US legislators

U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham speaks during an interview with media, as Russia's attack on Ukraine continues, in Kyiv, Ukraine May 26, 2023. REUTERS/Alina Smutko
REUTERS/Alina Smutko

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The News

Russia issued an arrest warrant for U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham after a video circulated by Ukraine appeared to show the South Carolina Republican celebrating the death of Russian soldiers.

It’s the latest in a string of counter-measures Russia has taken against the U.S. since Moscow’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022. Here’s a look at some earlier Kremlin maneuvers.

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Know More

Banning 500 Americans

Earlier this month, Moscow banned 500 Americans from entering Russia in retaliation for U.S. sanctions imposed against the Kremlin for its invasion of Ukraine. The list is an update to an original register of 200 Americans barred from the country last year.

It includes U.S. President Joe Biden, former President Barack Obama, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, several U.S. senators, and a smattering of late-night talk show hosts and media personalities.

Retaliatory sanctions

Last June, Russia counter-sanctioned a long list of U.S. officials, including Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm. The retaliatory sanctions, which also targeted media figures and business leaders, were imposed against people Russia views as “associated with spreading false stories about ‘malicious’ Russian cyberattacks,” Radio Free Europe reported.

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Step Back

The video that recently drew Russia’s ire shows Graham saying, “The Russians are dying,” and calling the U.S.’s aid to Ukraine “the best money we’ve ever spent.”

The footage circulated by Kyiv was edited to show the two comments together, but the remarks were actually made at different points during Graham’s meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Friday.