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You're reading: New York Times: US blacklists 5 Russians, a close Putin aide among them

WASHINGTON – The Obama administration has blacklisted five Russians, including the government’s chief public investigator, who is a close aide to President Vladimir V. Putin, for human rights abuses, laying down a marker for President-elect Donald J. Trump less than two weeks before he takes office with a vow to thaw relations with Russia.

The sanctions, announced on Jan. 9 by the Treasury Department, are not related to allegations of Russian hacking during the presidential election, according to a senior administration official. But they carry symbolic weight at a charged moment, as likely the last visible act the United States will take against Russia before power is transferred in Washington.

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