Australia has imposed targeted financial sanctions and travel bans against a Russian individual and four Russian companies connected to the construction and operation of the Kerch Strait Railway Bridge linking Russia to the illegally annexed territories of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, Ukraine.
This is reported in a statement by the Australian Foreign Ministry published on its official website on March 30.
"The Kerch bridge is an attempt to consolidate Russia’s control of the illegally annexed Crimean Peninsula. By virtue of their activities, this individual and the entities are complicit in seeking to legitimise Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol and support separatist activities in eastern Ukraine," the statement reads.
The ministry said that the announcement was made in coordination with Canada and aligns with action taken by the United Kingdom and European Union.
"We are steadfast in our commitment to maintaining pressure, including by way of sanctions, on individuals and entities who seek to facilitate Russia’s unlawful attempts to integrate Ukraine’s territory into Russia," it added.
In total, 168 individuals and 52 entities from Russia have been put on Australia's sanctions lists since 2014.
"This year marks the seventh anniversary of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol. Australia continues to urge Russia to return Crimea and Sevastopol to full Ukrainian control. Australia rejects Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol and will continue to call out its ongoing intervention, interference and provocative actions in eastern Ukraine," the report wrote.
The ministry also stated that Australia continues to support Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in coordination with its international partners.