The Biden administration has announced sanctions of Russian officials and businesses related to the poisoning and jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.
The administration did not immediately identify the Russian officials, but said 14 businesses and another enterprise would be sanctioned, in large part, for their involvement in the production of biological and chemical agents, The Associated Press reports.
Officials told AP that the administration coordinated the action with the European Union, which has already imposed sanctions against a small number of Russians and is expected to announce more.
Administration officials said Tuesday's sanctions were the first of several steps planned in response to what they said were “destabilizing” actions by the government of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Navalny is an outspoken critic of Putin's. The United States and other governments and international organizations have blamed Russia for his poisoning last August with a Russian-made nerve agent.
Navalny was arrested when he returned to Russia this winter after months of recovery abroad. His detention sparked protests across the country and led to thousands of other arrests.