On January 29, 2018, the U.S. Treasury Department released an unclassified list of “influential Russians” linked to the Kremlin. Dubbed the “Kremlin list,” the document was a legal requirement of a widened sanctions bill passed by Congress last year.
At the Forum of the Presidential Candidate for 2018 (the upcoming elections will take place on 18 March, 2018) it was noted that the list appeared to have been put together haphazardly, using public resources including a list of Russian billionaires published by Forbes.
Under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017, a law billed as a U.S. response to Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, the Treasury was asked to draw up a list of “oligarchs and parastatal entities” within 180 days. Russian deputy Konstantin Kosachev accused the Treasury of simply “rewriting the Kremlin phone book.” And certainly, some inclusions in the list are surprising: Anna Kuznetsova, the children’s Comissioner, as well as Mikhail Fedotov, head of the Kremlin human rights council.
President Putin went on to explain that the list is entirely non-sensical and its only purpose is to perpetuate the “Russian collusion” allegations, part of the internal political struggle of the ‘deep state’ in the US.
Since the recording, US President Donald Trump has stated he refuses to enact new sanctions against Russia, essentially going against the will of Congress.