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The Russian Foreign Ministry said it had banned entry to 287 British MPs in response to the UK's sanctions against Russian parliamentarians.
“In response to the decision taken by the British government on March 11 to add 386 State Duma deputies to a sanctions list, in a reciprocal move, personal restrictions are being placed on 287 members of the House of Commons,” the ministry said in a statement. The House of Commons has 650 members.
“These persons, who are now banned from entering the Russian Federation, took the most active part in the establishment of anti-Russian sanctions instruments in London, contribute to the groundless whipping up of Russophobic hysteria in the UK,” a translation of the statement reported by state-owned Russian news agency RIA Novosti said.
“The hostile rhetoric and far-fetched accusations coming from the lips of British parliamentarians not only condone the hostile course of London, aimed at demonising our country and its international isolation, but are also used by opponents of a mutually respectful dialogue with Russia to undermine the foundation of bilateral co-operation.”
Among those to have been barred from Russia are former health secretary Jeremy Hunt, Brexit Opportunities Minister Jacob Rees-Mogg, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Therese Coffey, and Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle.
The latest sanctions follow those imposed on 13 British politicians including Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, and Home Secretary Priti Patel.
Russian President Vladimir Putin accused them of “inciting the Neo-Nazi Kyiv regime” and stirring Russophobia to the detriment of the British people.
Wednesday's sanctions are unlikely to be the last.
“Taking into account London's bet on the consistent strengthening of anti-Russian sanctions, work on retaliatory countermeasures, including the expansion of the Russian stop list, will continue,” Russia's Foreign Ministry said.