Eyeing weakness in Russian economy, West seeks to inflict more pain on Moscow

Energy Associated Press

U.S. and European officials hope a new round of sanctions targeting energy and defense entities, as well as major banks, will deepen Russia's economic pain and force President Vladimir Putin to end provocations in Ukraine.

Continue Reading Below

Obama administration officials say roughly 30 percent of Russia's banking sector assets are now constrained by U.S. sanctions. The sanctions target five of Russia's six largest state-owned banks and aim to curtail their access to U.S. debt markets.

The West is also halting sales to lucrative Russian economic sectors. The U.S. announced plans to block future technology sales to the oil industry, and Europe approved an arms embargo.

The Europeans also backed sanctions Tuesday against state-owned banks and the energy sector, though the specific EU targets won't be made public until later in the week.