Visa, Mastercard Block Certain Russian Firms Due To Sanctions

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by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Mar 02, 2022 - 01:35 AM

The Western world continues to obsess about using financial weapons to implode Russia's economy. The latest is payment and credit card giants Visa and Mastercard blocked certain Russian financial institutions from their payment networks to comply with international sanctions, according to Bloomberg

On Monday, Mastercard said it had "blocked multiple financial institutions" from its payment network without naming names.

"We will continue to work with regulators in the days ahead to abide fully by our compliance obligations as they evolve," Mastercard said.

"Visa is taking prompt action to ensure compliance with applicable sanctions, and is prepared to comply with additional sanctions that may be implemented," the firm said in a statement Tuesday.

The move comes after European nations and the U.S. announced a series of sanctions to cut off Russia from the global financial system. One restrictive measure removed "selected Russian banks" from the SWIFT messaging system that will harm their ability to operate globally. Also, restrictive measures were placed on the Russian Central Bank from deploying its international reserves to support the ruble.

The U.S., European Union, and the U.K. also targeted Russian oligarchs to find and seize their assets. The trans-Atlantic task force will "identify, hunt down, and freeze the assets of sanctioned Russian companies and oligarchs," said a senior Biden Administration official.

"We'll go after their yachts, their luxury apartments, their money, and their ability to send their kids to fancy colleges in the West," the official said. 

The wide-ranging sanctions were in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine five days ago. Russian forces are marching towards the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv, though they have made little progress over the past 24 hours due to logistical difficulties. It seems Western sanctions have yet to deter Russian President Putin from backing down.