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British PM Boris Johnson details sanctions against Russia

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British PM Boris Johnson details sanctions against Russia
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson (pictured standing) called Russian President Vladimir Putin a "blood-stained aggressor" Thursday while detailing a new round of British sanctions against Russia, designed to weaken its economy in the wake of its military campaign against Ukraine. File Photo by Hugo Philpott/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 24 (UPI) -- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called Russian President Vladimir Putin a "dictator" and "blood-stained aggressor" in an address to the British Parliament Thursday, while detailing new sanctions against Russia.

Johnson called it the "largest set of sanctions ever imposed anywhere by the U.K. government."

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The sanctions target more than 100 businesses and individuals. That includes freezing the assets of all major Russian banks in response to the country's attack on neighboring Ukraine.

"Putin will stand condemned in the eyes of the world and of history. He will never be able to cleanse the blood of Ukraine from his hands," Johnson said, according to the Evening Standard.

The sanctions will block major Russian companies from raising money in Britain and prevent Moscow from raising sovereign debt on British markets.

Johnson also lobbied allies to have Russia removed from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication network. The high-security SWIFT payment system connects financial institutions around the world. No decision has been reached on that front, but such a move would restrict Russia's ability for international trade.

"I will not be diplomatic on this. Everyone who now doubts whether Russia should be banned from SWIFT has to understand that the blood of innocent Ukrainian men, women and children will be on their hands too. BAN RUSSIA FROM SWIFT," Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted Thursday.

This comes after Johnson on Tuesday, announced sanctions against five of the country's banks and three Russian billionaires with close ties to Putin.

Johnson also mentioned possible new legislation that would limit the amount of deposits Russian nationals will be able to hold in British banks.

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The new sanctions will take effect once passed in the British Parliament, which could come as soon as next week.

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