OTTAWA Aug 6 Canada followed the U.S. and
European Union on Wednesday by announcing more sanctions on
Russian individuals and entities, including VTB Bank OAO
, Russia's second-largest bank by assets.
In addition to VTB, Canada targeted Bank of Moscow and the
Russian Agricultural Bank (Rosselkhozbank). The United States
imposed sanctions on all three banks last Wednesday to punish
Russia for its actions in Ukraine.
Another Canadian target is the Russian National Commercial
Bank, the assets of which were frozen by the EU last week.
In all, the Canadians unveiled sanctions and travel bans
against a total of 19 Russian and Ukrainian individuals and 22
Russian and Ukrainian groups and economic entities.
Ottawa, which blames Russian President Vladimir Putin for
the unrest in Ukraine, has already announced several rounds of
sanctions this year.
"These sanctions, imposed in close coordination with
partners in the United States and Europe, will further increase
pressure on those responsible for the crisis in Ukraine," Prime
Minister Stephen Harper said in a statement.
"We stand ready to take further actions if the Putin
regime's military aggression continues," he added.
Canada also took aim at low-cost Russian air carrier
Dobrolyot, which said on Sunday it was suspending all flights
after the European Union announced punitive measures against it
Ottawa has so far not sanctioned two key Putin allies who
have Canadian business interests.
(Reporting by David Ljunggren; editing by Gunna Dickson)