Source - Alliance News

The British government said Thursday it had frozen the assets of the UK-based steel and mining firm Evraz PLC as it is of strategic significance for Russia's military campaign in Ukraine.  

Evraz's main shareholder is Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, who is already under sanctions, and its main operations are in Russia.

Adding the firm to its sanctions list, London noted that Evraz produces almost all of the railway tracks used in Russia and over a quarter of railway wheels.

‘This is of vital significance as Russia uses rail to move key military supplies and troops to the frontline in Ukraine,’ the British government said in a statement.

It noted that Evraz's core operations are in Russia where it is a major employer. 

‘These sanctions will further chip away at Putin's financial reserves and siege economy, and support Ukraine's continued resistance,’ said the British government.

It added that the asset freeze means no UK citizen or company can do business with Evraz, and will further deter companies operating in strategic sectors in Russia. 

Contacted by AFP, Evraz did not have any comment on Thursday afternoon.

Chelsea owner Abramovich was placed on the UK's sanction list at the beginning of March, which led to the resignation of most of Evraz's board of directors.

The company said numerous times that with a 28.64% stake Abramovich was a significant investor but did not control the company.

The firm also objected to statements in the British government documents sanctioning Abramovich that Evraz had possibly furnished steel to the Russian military that may have been used in the manufacture of tanks.

Britain said Thursday it had sanctioned more than 1,000 individuals and 100 firms since the start of the Russian invasion in Ukraine in February.

source: AFP

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