The Russian government has released a list of 41 Australian reporters, defense lobbyists and local council members barred from entering the country.
The Russian Foreign Ministry on Friday night released the blacklist in what it said was a response to “politically motivated sanctions” by the Australian government against Russian individuals.
Among them is SBS’s chief international correspondent, Ben Lewis, who has been covering the Russian invasion of Ukraine since tensions began escalating this year.
Ben Lewis, SBS News’ chief international correspondent, is on a new list of people sanctioned by the Russian government after his coverage of the war in Ukraine. source: SBS News
“Australian defense industry complex contractors, journalists and municipal representatives who constitute the anti-Russian agenda in this country are banned from entering our country indefinitely,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.
Lewis, who is currently in London, said he was surprised it took so long to add him to the sanctions list.
“Nice day to be approved by the Russian government, because of our coverage of the invasion of Ukraine,” he wrote on Twitter.
Other journalists from ABC, Nine News, Seven News, Ten News, Sky News and The Australian, along with several academics are also included.
Also on the list were executives from military contractors Thales Australia, DroneShield and BAE Systems.
Woullahra’s advisors, Luise Elsing and Matthew Robertson, were also appointed.
Wallaha Council in eastern Sydney proposed earlier this year that the street where the Russian Consulate is located – Fullerton Street – be renamed “Ukraine Street”. The council backed down in June, recognizing “strong opposition from residents” of the street.
Friday penalties press .
These included businessmen, military officials, academics, and journalists.
Australia won’t ban Russian tourists in response to Ukraine’s invasions
The announcement came as acting Prime Minister Richard Marles ruled out Australia’s ban on Russian tourists in response to their country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Marles, who is also defense minister, said Australia’s goal was to “empower” Ukraine to be “at the center” of ending the conflict.
“This needs to be resolved [Kyiv’s] This should be the result given the unjustified aggression we have seen from Russia.”
When asked if Australia will ban Russian tourists from entering the country, Marlis said the sanctions are not focused on the people themselves.
“It’s not something we’re thinking about right now, but we’re a big part of the global base of sanctions against the Russian regime,” he said.
Mr. Marlis also said that Moscow’s aggression “cannot be allowed to stand” when asked if Australia would support Ukraine in its efforts to take back Crimea from Russia after its 2014 annexation of the peninsula.
When asked if Australia would provide more military support to Ukraine amid calls for more help to help the country consolidate its gains against Russia, Marles said the government would have an “ongoing conversation” about how to do so.
He said there was no “delay” for committed military support to Ukraine – including Bushmasters and armored vehicles – with the program “on schedule”.
When asked why the government has not reopened the Australian embassy in Ukraine while about 60 other countries have done so, Marlis said it is being worked on, with logistical and security concerns.