The law also allows the administration to compile a separate classified list that would subject officials only to visa bans. The administration can update both lists at any time.
In response, Russia has banned 18 Americans from entering the country.
The list released yesterday by the Russian Foreign Ministry includes John Yoo, a former US Justice Department official who wrote legal memos authorizing harsh interrogation techniques; David Addington, the chief of staff for former US vice president Dick Cheney; and two former commanders of the Guantanamo Bay detention center and retired major general Geoffrey Miller.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in a statement yesterday that the US sanctions struck “a strong blow to bilateral relations and joint trust.”
The US embassy in Moscow said it had no immediate comment.
Also on Russia’s list are 14 Americans whom Russia says violated the rights of Russians abroad.
It does not give specifics of the alleged violations, but includes several current or former federal prosecutors in the case of Viktor Bout, the Russian arms merchant sentenced last year to 25 years in prison for selling weapons to a US-designated foreign terrorist group.