Russia bans U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Russia bans U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu

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Russia slapped U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu with a ban. Russia slapped U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu with a ban.
MOSCOW (WVUE) -

Russia has imposed a travel ban on nine U.S. lawmakers and other officials, including Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-LA.

The move is the latest in a high-stakes international standoff between the United States and Russia over the crisis in the Ukraine.

The Russian Foreign Ministry made the move minutes after President Barack Obama announced a new round of sanctions. The ministry said "the use of sanctions is a double-edged sword that will boomerang against the United States."

"Being sanctioned by President Putin is a badge of honor," Landrieu said. "It will not stop me from using my power as chair of the Energy Committee to promote America as an energy superpower and help increase energy exports around the world.

Other United States lawmakers included in the ban are 

House Speaker House Speaker John Boehner, R-OH, and Sen. Bob Menendez, D-NJ, the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.

It also names Ben Rhodes, a deputy U.S. national security adviser along with other White House advisers, Caroline Atkinson and Dan Pfeiffer, along with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NV, Senators John McCain, R-AZ and Dan Coats, R-IN.

"We must minimize Russia's influence over Europe, the former Soviet states—especially Ukraine that has fought so long for freedom—and our allies. And it most certainly will not stop me from advocating for orphans in Russia and around the world," Landrieu said.

Tensions remain high in Crimea, despite the release of a Ukrainian naval commander held by pro-Russian forces.

An AP photographer in Sevastopol reports Pro-Russian forces have seized three Ukrainian warships there.

Ukraine's deputy defense minister is accusing Russian troops of constantly threatening to storm military bases where Ukrainian soldiers are located, according to the Interfax news agency.

Russia moved its military into Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula several weeks ago and has since formally annexed the region.

Ukraine's ambassador to the United Nations says Russia now appears to be preparing for a military "invasion" in other parts of his country.

The actions have prompted the United States and the European Union to impose a variety of sanctions against Russia.

Copyright 2014 WVUE. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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