Putin rants about West’s ’empire of lies’ as worldwide sanctions reduce rouble to rubble

Daily Mail

A smirking Vladimir Putin today ranted about the West’s ’empire of lies’ and banned Russians from sending their money abroad from midnight as worldwide sanctions caused the rouble to tumble and sparked a nationwide rush to withdraw cash.

The currency sank 30 per cent in early trading before easing back to stand 20 per cent down. Its collapsing value risks wiping out the savings of ordinary Russians, who have been seen flocking to ATMs all over the country to empty their accounts, including in Putin’s home city of St Petersburg. 

But as the Russian economy tanked, the Russian President took another swipe at Western sanctions today during an emergency meeting with economic officials at the Kremlin.

‘I’ve invited you here to talk about issues to do with the economy,’ he told officials with a smirk, adding: ‘I mean of course the sanctions which the so-called Western community – the empire of lies – is trying to implement against our country.’

This afternoon Putin announced a diktat to ban the depositing of cash in any foreign accounts from tomorrow, to stop cash, especially held by rich Russians, moving out of the country and further destablising the economy.

A fresh barrage of sanctions today saw the US cut off the Russian central bank, effectively preventing Americans from doing business with it and severely limiting Russia’s ability to defend its currency.

The US also imposed sanctions on the state investment fund, with an official saying Joe Biden intended to ensure the Russian economy ‘goes backward as long as Putin goes forward with his invasion of Ukraine’.

Today, Liz Truss said all Russian banks would be hit with a full asset freeze within days as she announced new powers to limit them from clearing payments in sterling, which will initially target the nation’s largest bank, Sberbank.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps wrote to British ports telling them to turn away any Russian ships.

Even famously neutral Switzerland announced it was copying the EU’s sanctions regime and banning five oligarchs from the country.

Russia’s central bank has now more than doubled interest rates from 9.5 per cent to 20 per cent and refused to open the Moscow stock exchange in a desperate attempt to protect its currency and economy.

Despite the measure, vast queues were seen outside cash machines in Russia today.

Pictures show people in Saint Petersburg queuing around the corner to use nearby ATMs. It comes as fears rise of an economic collapse in Russia due to biting Western sanctions imposed following president Vladimir Putin’s now floundering invasion of Ukraine.

Its board of directors blamed a ‘drastic change’ on the ‘external conditions for the economy’ behind the massive interest rate hike.

Top economists and the finance ministry also ordered exporting companies to sell 80 per cent of their foreign currency revenues on the market to try to support the rouble – the value of which continued to collapse against the dollar and the euro on the Moscow Stock Exchange on Monday.

Despite banking chiefs attempting to steady the ship, the Russian rouble plummeted to an all-time low as the West’s sanctions over the Ukraine war start to squeeze the economy.

The European Central Bank also warned on Monday that the European subsidiary of the Russian state-owned Sberbank – one of the Russian banks under UK sanctions – was facing bankruptcy.

The rest is here: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10559201/FOREX-Rouble-skids-time-low-dollar-surges-West-bolsters-Russia-sanctions.html

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