Britain Targets Socialite Stepdaughter of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Latest Round of Sanctions

Russian Foreign Minister
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attended a joint press conference with the International Committee of the Red Cross president in Moscow on Thursday. Getty

Socialite Polina Kovaleva is among 65 “oligarchs, businesses and hired thugs complicit in the murder of innocent civilians," said British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.

Britain has targeted the socialite stepdaughter of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in a new series of blistering sanctions designed to economically cripple Russia over its relentless invasion of Ukraine.

Britain froze the assets of 26-year-old Polina Kovaleva, who it described as the stepdaughter of Lavrov. She owns a $5.8 million apartment in London's fashionable Kensington district, which she purchased with cash, according to the British government.

The sanctions on 59 Russian and six Belarusian entities and individuals included state-run shipping firm Sovcomflot, private military contractor Wagner Group, also described as Russian President Vladimir Putin's private army, and Alrosa, the world's largest diamond producer with an estimated market value of $6.61 billion.

Activists picketed outside her luxury flat earlier this month, saying she was the "daughter of a war criminal."

"Putin should be under no illusions, we are united with our allies and will keep tightening the screw on the Russian economy to help ensure he fails in Ukraine," Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said Thursday. "There will be no let up."

Kovaleva is the daughter of Lavrov's reported mistress. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also spoke out about the new sanctions, saying, "We've got to tighten the economic vice around Putin, sanctioning more people today, as we are, sanctioning the Wagner Group, looking at what we can do to stop Putin using his gold reserves, and also doing more to help the Ukrainians defend themselves."

Truss said the 65 sanctioned individuals and entities were "oligarchs, businesses and hired thugs complicit in the murder of innocent civilians," and all should “pay the price."

Maria Pevchikh, an investigator for jailed Russian opposition leader Alexander Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation, recently posted on Twitter that Kovaleva enjoyed a lavish lifestyle in the West.

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