Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin Reuters

The US Senate on Tuesday unanimously passed a resolution condemning Russian President Vladimir Putin as a war criminal.

The resolution, introduced by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and backed by senators of both parties, encouraged the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague and other nations to target the Russian military in any investigation of war crimes committed during Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Reuters reported.

"All of us in this chamber joined together, with Democrats and Republicans, to say that Vladimir Putin cannot escape accountability for the atrocities committed against the Ukrainian people," Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a speech on the Senate floor ahead of the vote.

The vote in the Senate came hours after the Russian Foreign Ministry announced that it is imposing sanctions on President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and others as tensions escalate between Russia and the West over Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

“In response to a series of unprecedented sanctions banning, among other things, entry into the United States for top officials of the Russian Federation," the senior US officials are being placed on "the Russian ‘stop-list’ on the basis of mutual reciprocity, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a post on Facebook quoted by The Hill.

Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mark Milley has also been placed on the list, along with "a number of department heads and famous American leaders,” the post adds.

Others sanctioned include White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, Biden’s son Hunter Biden, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and CIA Director William Burns. The Russian Foreign Ministry said more people would be added to the list.

Russia's Foreign Ministry also announced sanctions on Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Canadian Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly and Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand.

Russia has been slapped with sanctions in response to its invasion of Ukraine. Shortly after the invasion started, EU leaders agreed to impose new economic sanctions on Russia, freezing Russian assets in the bloc and halting its banks' access to European financial markets.

A day later, the EU announced a freeze on the assets of Russian President Vladimir Putin himself, as well as on his Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. The US followed suit and sanctioned Putin and Lavrov as well.

World leaders also decided to cut off Russian financial institutions from using the SWIFT money transfer system.

The EU also added top Kremlin-linked oligarchs to its sanctions blacklist, targeting some of the key moneymen accused of backing Putin's regime.

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