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The Former US Ambassador To Russia Has Been Banned From Russia

Michael McFaul says he's apparently been unable to travel to Moscow since 2014.

Posted on November 11, 2016, at 1:04 p.m. ET

Michael McFaul, who served as the Obama administration's ambassador to Russia during the first term, says that he is now banned from traveling to Russia.

Sergei Karpukhin / Reuters

McFaul, who has been a professor at Stanford University since he left Moscow in 2014, revealed his inability to visit the country on his Twitter account Friday.

Confirmed that I am on the Kremlin's sanction lists and cannot travel to Russia.

That's apparently because he'd been added to a sanctions list that Moscow issued in 2014, though his name did not appear on any lists made public at the time.

Was told that I am the Kremlin's sanctions list because of my close affiliation with Obama. The U.S. sanctioned Russians close to Putin.

The US and Russia have been engaged in a tit for tat sanctioning individuals since 2012, when the US approved the so-called Magnitsky List, a collection of Russian individuals accused of human rights abuses. Since then, any new addition to the Magnistky List has resulted in Russia adding a complementary number of Americans to its own rolls.

The former ambassador was himself unaware of his ban until he attempted to travel to work on Hillary Clinton's potential transition to the White House in December.

I found out about my travel ban when I tried to get a visa to travel to Moscow next month to do Clinton transition work. No longer needed!

McFaul spent the last few months of the campaign railing against Russia's interference in the election process.

The Obama administration in October accused Russian hackers of working with Wikileaks to release emails stolen from the Clinton campaign.
Beck Diefenbach / Reuters

The Obama administration in October accused Russian hackers of working with Wikileaks to release emails stolen from the Clinton campaign.

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