Russia has banned entry to 227 U.S. citizens, including prominent journalists, researchers, and government officials as part of a new spate of sanctions targeting Americans supporting Washington’s “Russophobic policies,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said. Among the targeted journalists are a handful who report on cybersecurity issues.

The ministry said the sanctions are a response to the legal restrictions that the U.S. imposes on Russian citizens who support the Kremlin and the war against Ukraine, which Russia refers to as a “special military operation.” They target people directly involved in “anti-Russian actions,” they claimed.

The recent sanctions list targets a number of journalists, including New York Times Magazine contributor Robert F. Worth, and Jeff Seldin, the national security correspondent at Voice of America.

VOA’s public relations team said in a statement that they stand by Seldin’s reporting and will not be deterred from serving their audience in Russia. 

“VOA’s mandate is to provide accurate, objective, and comprehensive news and information to every part of the world,” the outlet said.

Last May, VOA’s former acting director, Yolanda Lopez, was also sanctioned by the Russian government. 

The new sanctions also target four current and former Washington Post reporters, including Ellen Nakashima, who covers national security and intelligence issues, as well as cybersecurity columnists Joseph Menn, Joseph Marks, and Tim Starks.

Menn is the author of several books, including “Fatal System Error: The Hunt for the New Crime Lords Who Are Bringing Down the Internet,” which he described as “the first serious journalism accusing the Russian intelligence agencies of working with organized cybercriminals.”

Marks and Starks, who no longer work at the Washington Post, were co-authors of the now-defunct daily newsletter Cybersecurity 202, which aggregated cyber news from various sources and provided analysis of current cyber events, including in Russia. Nakashima often contributed to the newsletter.

Starks said he received a message about the sanctions from his former editor.

“I’m amused and bemused. I suppose I ended up on the list because the Russians miss reading the now-defunct Cybersecurity 202,” Starks told Recorded Future News. 

He doesn’t expect the sanctions will impact him personally “anytime in the near or distant future,” other than if someone mentions it in a news article or on social media.

The Washington Post spokesperson declined to comment.

The State Department officials affected by the sanctions include Michael Cass-Antony, the senior advisor for sanctions policy, spokesman Matthew Miller, former U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan and former U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman.

Moscow also sanctioned dozens of professors from universities, including Columbia University, Yale, University of Washington and Harvard.

“Whoo-hoo — the Russians finally sanctioned me! It took them long enough! It’s a badge of honor!” said Kimberly Marten, a scholar specializing in international security, foreign policy and Russia. “Proud to be #135 on the list!,” said Rob Person, a specialist on Russian and post-Soviet politics.

The sanctions list also includes employees of several U.S. companies, including space-tech firm Maxar Technologies and one of the world’s largest defense contractors Lockheed Martin. Both of them provide support to Ukraine amid its ongoing war with Russia.

Get more insights with the

Recorded Future

Intelligence Cloud.

Learn more.