Britain announces new aviation sanctions against Russia

Lanes are seen in the sky as a plane flies over London as the Union Jack flag flutters in the wind at 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain, January 29, 2022. REUTERS/May James

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LONDON (Reuters) – Britain unveiled new aviation sanctions on Wednesday giving the power to seize any Russian plane and ban the export of space-related planes or goods to Russia, saying it had already booked one.

Measures to strengthen action against Russian aircraft mean that any flying or landing in the UK is a criminal offence. Read more

The Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the ban includes any aircraft owned, operated or leased by any person associated with Russia or specific individuals or entities, and will include the authority to detain any aircraft owned by persons associated with Russia.

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“Banning Russian-flagged aircraft from the UK and making it a criminal offense to fly them will lead to more economic pain for Russia and those close to the Kremlin,” Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said.

The Foreign Office said it would introduce new legislation on Wednesday to implement the measures, which also include the power to remove any British aircraft from the registration of sanctioned Russian individuals and entities.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said one plane had already been booked while further investigations were under way. The Telegraph reported that the private plane was linked to a friend of Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich.

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“We know that it is not a Russian company that owns the plane, but rather a plane registered in Luxembourg. We are conducting further checks before it is launched,” Shapps told LBC radio.

The new sanctions will also ban aerospace-related exports, including insurance and reinsurance.

The statement said this would mean that insurance coverage on existing policies would be withdrawn and that British-based insurance and reinsurance companies would not be able to pay claims on existing policies in these sectors.

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(Reporting by William James and Michael Holden); Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Shri Navaratnam

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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