The Kremlin on Wednesday said that imposing sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin personally would be “politically destructive” and would not hurt him a day after President Biden issued a warning that the U.S. could consider such a move should Russia invade Ukraine, Reuters reported.
Biden warned that sanctions personally targeting Putin would be considered as a measure against the Russian leader to compel Moscow to halt any aggressive efforts encroaching into Ukraine.
Personal sanctions on Putin would be “not painful [but] politically destructive,” said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, according to Reuters. Peskov previously stated that such individual sanctions would be tantamount to diplomatic severance.
Russia has amassed nearly 100,000 troops on its border with Ukraine but denies claims that it plans to invade the former Soviet state.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said Russia was not ready to invade as it currently stood, though he did not deny that an invasion was possible in the future, Reuters notes.
U.S. leaders have been attempting for weeks to build an agreement with its European allies for a plan of sanctions if Russia attacks, but it has proven to be difficult to gain consensus, as many European countries rely on Russia for energy and are interwoven with the country for business, Reuters reports.
“There is strong bipartisan consensus in quickly moving forward legislation,” a Senate aide told The Hill.
Lawmakers have offered different packages of sanctions proposals and are discussing how to settle major differences, including when to hit Russia with financial penalties.
Russia has failed to adhere to repeated calls by the U.S. to pull back its troops and the United Kingdom is now warning allies that Moscow plans to “install pro-Russian leadership” in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv.