Washington – President Biden is about to announce aabout the country Two sources familiar with the matter told CBS News, targeting Russian President Vladimir Putin’s main source of income as Russian forces continue to strike Ukrainian cities.
The ban also applies to Russian natural gas and coal, sources said. The move comes as energy prices soared following the Russian invasion, despite US efforts to release oil reserves and increase supply.
The White House said the president would speak at 10:45 a.m. to “announce actions to continue to hold Russia accountable for its unprovoked and unwarranted war on Ukraine.”
As of December, Russian oil accounted for less than 5% of total US oil imports, according to the Department of Energy, making the US much less dependent on Russian energy than its European counterparts. Nevertheless, analysts havethat the ban on Russian imports could push the price of oil to new all-time highs.
Ukrainian leaders have pleaded with Washington and the West to cut off Russian energy imports within 13 days of the start of Russian troop attacks on Ukraine. Lawmakers from both parties have also stepped up pressure on the administration to block Russian oil in recent days, preparing legislation to impose the ban if the Biden administration does not act.
The administration was initially reluctant to take action against Russian energy imports, fearing a spike in energy prices. But senior officials have signaled their willingness to impose the ban, with White House press secretary Jen Psaki saying on Monday that “discussions are ongoing internally and also with our counterparts and partners in Europe and around the world.” world”.
The United States and its allies have imposed punitive sanctions on Russia since the invasion, targeting the country’s financial system andincluding Putin himself.