- The Washington Times
Sunday, February 27, 2022

The White House praised Japan on Sunday for joining Europe and the West in supporting efforts to disconnect Russia from critical banking systems.

The U.S. and Europe on Saturday kicked a number of Russian banks off the system known as SWIFT, making it difficult for them to conduct international financial transactions. It is the strongest sanction imposed so far for the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. 

“We welcome Japan’s announcement today that it will stand with the European Commission, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States to isolate Russia from the international financial system and our economies,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said. “Following Japan’s announcement, the entire G-7 now supports disconnecting selected Russian banks from SWIFT, restrictions on the Russian Central Bank, and sanctioning key Russian leaders, including President [Vladimir] Putin.”

Ms. Psaki hailed Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in “condemning President Putin’s attack on Ukraine and we will continue working closely together to impose further severe costs and make Putin’s war of choice a strategic failure.”

Mr. Putin, citing in part what he said were harsh economic sanctions by the U.S. and allies already in the crisis, said Sunday in Moscow that he was elevating the readiness status of Russia‘s massive nuclear deterrence force.

• Tom Howell Jr. can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

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