Scomo announces Russian sanctions: Here’s what they mean.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced Australia will impose a range of sanctions against Russia, saying Vladimir Putin's "invasion of Ukraine" has started.
Australia is set to target Russia with a round of sanctions following its invasion of Ukraine, as Morrison promised to "ratchet up" the response should military action continue. Sanctions and travel bans will target eight members of the Russian Federation's security council, while existing sanctions in place over past aggression will be expanded. Russian banks have also been targeted.
The measures include the following:
- Travel bans and sanctions on eight members of Russia's security council.
- Existing sanctions for the Crimea and Sevastopol region, such as restrictions on imports and exports, will be expanded to include the regions of Luhansk and Donetsk. Russia has recognised Luhansk and Donetsk in Ukraine as independent regions.
- Sanctions will apply to people and entities deemed to have "strategic and economic significance to Russia".
- Sectors targeted will include transport, energy, telecommunications, oil, gas, and mineral reserves.
- Russian banks to also be targeted through sanctions, following similar moves from Western allies.
- AUSTRAC and major banks have been alerted to look out for suspicious transactions following the sanctions.
- Russia's ambassador to Australia has been called to a meeting with the secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
If you're wondering why we seem to be on the cusp of a world war, a week or two ago we spoke to Professor @JohnBlaxland1 about what could potentially go down between Russia and Ukraine as we explain how the tensions got to this point,https://t.co/kUePxaRQD0 pic.twitter.com/5c7tr1kTwv— Claire Murphy (@ClaireMurph) February 22, 2022
"The invasion of Ukraine has effectively already begun. They're acting like thugs and bullies. Australians always stand up to bullies and we will be standing up to Russia," Morrison said.
Around 430 Ukrainian visa applications will jump to the top of the pile and the more than 1000 Ukrainians outside of Australia who already have visas are being welcomed back, Morrison explained. It is believed up to 1400 Australians remain in Ukraine, with 184 registered for embassy support, which is currently being run out of Poland.
- With AAP.
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Hi guys, as an Asian woman I'm really interested in the murders of Christina Yuna Lee and Michelle Alyssa Go.
They both lived in New York and were murdered within weeks of each other by homeless men: Christina was killed after the murderer slipped in behind her when she opened the front door of her building, and Michelle was pushed onto the train tracks while she waited on the platform.
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The pop culture stories you missed.
SAS Australia has started this week, which has really thrown me. I swear the last season ended a month ago. But alas! Here we are. This time, they've switched out a lot of the staff I affectionately call the 'angry British men' for Americans, which has ALSO really thrown me. It's not as endearing to see Americans angry as it is British, I'm sorry.
My favourite thing about SAS - besides seeing celebrities get yelled at - is the interrogations, where the celebs are grilled about their past indiscretions, defining moments and feelings. I find these chats really humanise people who we might just recognise as a face on the TV or a name in a tabloid headline. It's sometimes infuriating, sometimes tear-inducing, but always really, really interesting.
This week, the show began with former champion swimmer Geoff Huegill opening up about the moments in 2014 when he and his then-wife were arrested for drug possession. He said this all culminated in his marriage breaking down, and he carried a lot of regret about not seeing his children as often as he wanted.
"I was carrying a lot of shame and a lot of guilt that I put my family through that process, and it led me to get to a point where I had to make the call to leave my family." https://t.co/Qi3CcvXNdm— Mamamia (@Mamamia) February 22, 2022
"I was carrying a lot of shame and a lot of guilt that I put my family through that process, and it led me to get to a point where I had to make the call to leave my family," he said.
"I definitely have regret. My biggest one would be not being in my kids' lives on a daily basis, because of our marriage separation. The last time I got to hold them was 18 months ago."
You can read about the whole conversation here: In 2014, Geoff Huegill's life "turned upside down" overnight. This is what it looks like now.
Russia invades Ukraine, and all the news you need to know this morning.
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Before you get stuck in, lets you get across the biggest news stories making a buzz this Wednesday morning.
1. Joe Biden announces US sanctions on Russia as it 'begins invasion' of Ukraine.
US President Joe Biden says the United States is imposing a "first tranche" of sanctions on Russia in response to its military escalation against Ukraine.
Biden said the sanctions target two large Russian financial institutions and Moscow's access to international financing as well as Russian oligarchs.
He said the US is "prepared to go further with sanctions" should Russia expand its aggression against its neighbour.
Starting tomorrow — and continuing in the days ahead — we will also be imposing sanctions on Russian elites and their family members.— President Biden (@POTUS) February 22, 2022
They share in the corrupt gains of the Kremlin’s policies and should share in the pain as well.
Russian President Vladimir Putin dramatically escalated tensions on Monday by recognising the independence of Ukraine's pro-Russia breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.
He then ordered troops to enter, claiming they would carry out peacekeeping duties.
"This is the beginning of a Russian invasion of Ukraine," Biden said in justifying the move.
"We still believe that Russia is poised to go much further in launching a massive military attack against Ukraine."
BREAKING: Scott Morrison convening the national security committee of cabinet this morning on Russia and Ukraine @9NewsAUS— Jonathan Kearsley (@jekearsley) February 22, 2022
2. Morrison backs bill that allows the exclusion of transgender people from female sport.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has publicly backed a proposed law that will allow sporting organisations to ban transgender women from competing in female sport.
Describing the save women's sport bill, as "terrific," Morrison told reporters on Tuesday he’s given Liberal Senator Claire Chandler’s bill "great encouragement."
"Claire is a champion for women’s sport and I think she’s been right to raise these issues in the way that she has. Well done, Claire."
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has thrown his support behind a bill that would make it easier for sporting organisations to exclude transgender women from competing in female sports @KnottMatthew | #auspol #LGBTQI https://t.co/2pH9ZrUW9u— The Age (@theage) February 22, 2022
Transgender advocates have slammed the PM’s comments, with Equality Australia calling out Morrison’s "complete lack of empathy."
It was only weeks ago that several Liberal MPs crossed the floor because of trans rights being ignored in the government’s controversial Sex Discrimination Act.
3. $500,000 reward for Theo Hayez.
A $500,000 reward is being offered for information about the disappearance of 18-year-old Belgian backpacker Theo Hayez, who vanished on a night out in the northern NSW beach town of Byron Bay, nearly three years ago.
NSW Police will announce the reward on Wednesday in the popular tourist hamlet, in the hope it will lead to the discovery of Hayez's whereabouts or disclose the circumstances of his disappearance.
The 18-year-old was last seen at about 11pm on May 31, 2019, outside a nightclub on Jonson Street.
An inquest is currently underway in the NSW Coroner's court.
Police have announced a $500,000 reward for information into the disappearance of Byron Bay backpacker Theo Hayez almost three years after he vanished https://t.co/y7kCA3Og0I— Georgia Clark (@GeorgiaBClark) February 22, 2022
Tweed/Byron Police District Acting Commander, Detective Acting Superintendent Brendon Cullen, said investigators hope the reward will uncover answers for the family.
"Detectives want to ensure every avenue has been exhaustively examined and we are continuing to ask anyone who had any interaction with Theo after he left that Friday night to contact us," he said.
4. Wild weather across NSW and Queensland.
A torrential downpour has drenched Sydney and other parts of NSW with the rain expected to last throughout the week....as someone commuting to work in those ongoing downpours this morning, I can confirm: it's very wet.
Flash floods have impacted many towns and city roads, the SES said on Tuesday afternoon.
Severe Weather Update: heavy rain to bring flash flooding to parts of Qld and NSW. Video current: 11.30 am AEST 22 February 2022— Bureau of Meteorology, Australia (@BOM_au) February 22, 2022
Know your weather, know your risk. For the latest forecasts and warnings, go to our website https://t.co/RUzeNeLBj4 or the #BOMWeather app. pic.twitter.com/X9r8zhAnSx
Rescue crews have attended to at least 15 flood rescues across Sydney and the Central Coast with 450 call-outs statewide.
Meanwhile, Queensland has been hit with torrential rain, with parts of the Sunshine Coast recording 300 millimetres of rainfall in three hours overnight.
5. Queen cancels virtual meeting over COVID symptoms.
Queen Elizabeth will miss a planned virtual engagement on Tuesday because she is still experiencing mild cold-like symptoms after testing positive for COVID-19, a spokesman for Buckingham Palace says.
The palace announced that the Queen had tested positive on Sunday but was expected to carry on with light engagements, an indication that the world's current oldest and longest-reigning monarch was not seriously unwell.
She will now decide nearer to the time whether to press ahead with further engagements this week, such as her weekly conversation with Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday.
News of the positive test has sharpened concerns about the queen's health two weeks after she marked 70 years on the British throne.
The 95-year-old, who has been fully vaccinated against coronavirus, quipped last week to Palace staff that she could not move much, and she spent a night in hospital last October for an unspecified ailment.
And you're all up to speed.
We'll be back in here to update you on the latest news stories throughout the day.
- With AAP.
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Australia might start joining them, with some states looking to remove a number of restrictions. But are we ready to live with COVID so freely?
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Feature image: Getty.