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WASHINGTON (AP) – The Trump administration is punishing seven Russian oligarchs and 17 Russian government officials with sanctions for what the U.S. calls Russia’s “malign activity” around the world.

The Treasury Department says 12 companies owned by the oligarchs are also targeted, along with a state-owned arms-dealing company and a subsidiary bank.

Senior Trump administration officials say the sanctions are not in response to any one activity. They say it’s about punishing Moscow for the totality of its confrontational activity, including actions in Crimea and eastern Ukraine, support for Syrian President Bashar Assad, cyber-hacking and attempts to subvert Western democracy.

The officials weren’t authorized to comment by name and briefed reporters on condition of anonymity.

The penalties come as the administration tries to show President Donald Trump isn’t too soft on the Kremlin.

(Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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