Russia added 25 Americans to its sanctions list on Monday, including Hollywood actors Ben Stiller and Sean Penn. The Russian sanctions list now includes 1,073 Americans.
In a statement provided to the Russian-state-run TASS news agency, the Russian Foreign Ministry said the new sanctions are a “a tit-for-tat measure” in response to the growing number of Russians sanctioned by the U.S.
“As a measure in response to the ever-expanding personal sanctions on Russian citizens by [the US President] Joe Biden’s administration a permanent ban to enter the Russian Federation has been imposed on another group of U.S. Congress members, high-ranking officials, members of the business and expert community and cultural figures (25 people),” Russia’s foreign ministry said.
TASS noted the inclusion of Penn and Stiller in the latest round of Russian sanctions.
Both actors have been outspoken critics of Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Penn was in Ukraine near the start of the invasion and called for the U.S. to assist Ukraine so it didn’t have to “fight alone.”
Penn threatened to smelt down his Oscar trophies in March if the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences didn’t invite Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to speak at the 94th Academy Awards Ceremony.
In April, Penn said he might also take up arms and go fight in Ukraine against Russia.
Stiller personally met with Zelenskyy on a trip to Ukraine in June. During the visit, Stiller praised Zelenskyy, saying, “You’re my hero. You’re amazing. You quit a great acting career for this.”
The U.S. and other western nations have imposed dozens of sanctions on Russia since the invasion of Ukraine.
The Russian Foreign Ministry told TASS that it would continue to respond to further “hostile moves” against Russia by Washington.
“The hostile actions of the US government, which continue to follow a Russophobic course, destroy bilateral ties and escalate confrontation between Russia and the US, will continue to receive a decisive rebuff,” the statement said.
The list of Americans targeted by Russian sanctions includes President Biden himself.