Russia responds to sanctions, bans US President Joe Biden’s wife, daughter from entry | World News

Moscow: Russia on Tuesday responded to widening sanctions against Moscow by banning the wife and daughter of US President Joe Biden from entering the country. The Russian Foreign Ministry said 25 names were being added to the country’s “stop list” including Biden’s wife Jill and daughter Ashley.

It also banned entry to four senators whom it identified as “responsible for the formation of the (US) Russophobic course:” – Republicans Mitch McConnell, Susan Collins and Ben Sasse and Democrat Kirstin Gillibrand.

The list also includes prominent academics including Francis Fukuyama, noted for his book “The End of History and the Last Man” that posited the spread of liberal democracies could mark the ultimate development of society. Meanwhile, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliances would put 300,000 troops at high readiness in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Stoltenberg said the military alliance`s forces in the Baltic states and five other frontline countries would be increased “up to brigade levels”, doubled or trebled to between 3,000 and 5,000 troops, the Guardian reported.

That would amount to “the biggest overhaul of our collective defence and deterrence since the cold war”, he said before the meeting of the 30-country alliance, which runs from Tuesday to Thursday this week.

The rapid-reaction NATO Response Force currently numbers up to 40,000, and the proposed change amounts to a broad revision in response to Russian militarisation. Under the plans, NATO will also move stocks of munitions and other supplies farther east, a transition due to be completed in 2023, the Guardian reported.

The Secretary-General conceded he could not make any promises about the progress of applications by Sweden and Finland to join NATO, because objections raised by Turkey to their membership remained unresolved.

Stoltenberg said Turkey`s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, had agreed to meet Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson, and Finland`s President Sauli Niinisto on Tuesday in Madrid to try to resolve the issue. But he played down hopes of a breakthrough at the meeting on the margins of the NATO event.