The Russian government says it is sanctioning a further 121 Australian citizens including a state premier, business people, army officials and journalists.

Russia’s foreign ministry on Thursday night said the move to bar entry to the Australians was in response to Australian government sanctions against Russian individuals, put in place following the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

It accused those on the list of promoting a “Russophobic agenda” in Australia.

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Names include ABC chair Ita Buttrose, News Corp co-chair Lachlan Murdoch, South Australian Premier Peter Malinauskas and Defence Force chief General Angus Campbell alongside various business people, newspaper editors, academics and think tank heads.

Media personalities Stan Grant, Andrew Bolt and Liz Hayes were included as well as Atlassian co-founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar, mining magnates Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest and Gina Rinehart as well as Nine Entertainment Group chair Peter Costello and Meriton apartment developer Harry Triguboff.

Those mentioned on the list are barred from entering Russia indefinitely, the foreign ministry said.

It added that it could expand the blacklist as the Australian government “does not seem inclined to abandon its anti-Russia policy line and continues to produce new sanctions”.

In response, Mr Malinauskas said he would not be bullied by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“While travelling to Russia wasn’t on my bucket list, it appears this decision has been made in response to my government’s strong stance in standing up for Ukraine,” he said.

“Vladimir Putin, I won’t be bullied. The South Australian Government won’t be bullied and I will continue to stand up for democracy.”

Action taken by SA in response to the war in Ukraine has included removing state government investments in Russian assets, sending medical equipment to the region and resettling Ukrainian refugees.

Russia describes the incursion of its forces into Ukraine as a “special military operation” to disarm and “denazify” its neighbour.

Ukraine and its allies have rejected this as nonsense.

Australia in May sanctioned more than 70 Russian politicians and more than 30 local officials in the eastern Ukrainian separatist regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.

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Peter Fray
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