CNN pulls back the curtain on Russian oligarchs who will now face sanctions
Annual Direct Line with Vladimir Putin in Moscow - Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during his annual "Direct Line with Vladimir Putin" live call-in show. - -/Kremlin/dpa

On CNN Tuesday, reporter Tom Foreman profiled many of the Russian oligarchs — the country's wealthy elites, whose support keeps Vladimir Putin in power — who are being targeted by U.S. and NATO sanctions in the effort to punish the Kremlin for the invasion of Ukraine.

"Many Russian oligarchs who often spend a lot of time outside Russia at their foreign properties have deep ties to Putin," said Foreman. "Newly named to the U.S. sanctions list: Dennis Bortnikov, an official at a Russian bank and son of the director of the Federal Security Service, the modern KGB; Peter Fradkov, with ties to the defense industry; Vladimir Kiriyenko, who has also been sanctioned; and the list could grow."

Foreman also noted that the United Kingdom is placing sanctions on other oligarchs: Gannady Temchenko, and Boris and Igor Rotenberg.

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"Temchenko is one of the richest people in Russia, with Forbes estimating his worth at $24 billion," said Foreman. "The Rotenbergs have strong interest in gas and energy companies, and plenty of Russian banks and businesses are also on the list" — and, he noted, they played a key role in integrating assets from Crimea into the Russian economy after Putin's invasion in 2014.

"These individuals have kind of a tacit agreement with the state," said Edward Fishman, a former State Department official sitting down for the segment. "They support Putin politically, as a result, they're allowed to benefit from kleptocratic practices."

"Some of Putin's pals were hit with sanctions when Crimea fell in 2014," continued Foreman. "Analysts believe that did slow Russia's roll into Ukraine. And this time, many [like Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI)] say 'the economic consequences for Putin should be steep,' and for 'the oligarchs, their wives and mistresses, and their assets that they shelter abroad.' These sanctions could freeze accounts for these rich Russians, it could limit their travel, stop investments. even keep their grown kids from attending universities in the West. What we don't know is if all this rocking the yachts will make any difference to Vladimir Putin. Right now, the smart money says, maybe."

Watch below:

Tom Foreman profiles Russian oligarchs facing new U.S. sanctions www.youtube.com