Sexual and gender-based violence: EU sanctions hit two high-ranking Russian military officials 
March 8, 2023

Sexual and gender-based violence: EU sanctions hit two high-ranking Russian military officials 


Two high-ranking Russian military officials have been hit by EU sanctions, which were adopted on 7 March against nine individuals and three entities for their role in committing serious human rights violations and abuses, particularly sexual and gender-based violence.

Major-General Nikolai Kusnetsov, commander of the Dzerzhinsky division special forces unit of Rosgvardia, and colonel Ramil Ibatullin, who served in the Russian occupation troops in the Donbas region (2014-2017) and took part in Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine as commander of the 90th Guards Tank Division, are on the sanction list.

Kuznetsov’s unit was part of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine and members of his unit systematically participated in acts of sexual violence and rape in Ukraine in March/April 2022. The division under Ibatullin command took part in the offensive towards Chernihiv and Kyiv In March 2022. During the offensive, members of his division committed acts of sexual and gender-based violence against the Ukrainian civilian population.

“Ahead of the International Women’s Day, we move from words to action. No matter where it happens, we will combat and eliminate all forms of violence against women. With today’s decision, we are enhancing efforts to counter sexual and gender-based violence, to ensure that those responsible are fully accountable for their actions, and to combat impunity,” said EU High Representative Josep Borrell.

The new listings also include officers of the Moscow Police Station responsible for arbitrary arrests and detentions as well as torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment in the context of the censorship and oppression led by the Russian authorities; Taliban and Myanmar officials; commanders of the South Sudanese militias; the Qarchak Prison in Iran, and the Syrian Republican Guard.

The listed individuals and entities will now be subject to an asset freeze in the EU and travel ban to the EU. Moreover, persons and entities in the EU will be prohibited from making funds available, either directly or indirectly, to those listed.

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