EU Extends Sanctions against Russia

The European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council decided to extend the economic restrictive measures against Russia by six months on June 22.

“The European Union has extended economic sanctions against Russia up to January 31, 2016 with a view to complete implementation of the Minsk agreement,” said Susanne Kiefer, Press officer for the Foreign Affairs Council.

The decision was made without discussion and Kiefer announced it before all 28 EU countries Foreign Ministers arrived in Luxembourg.

The EU summit adopted a political declaration to extend economic sanctions against Russia for six months in March this year, linking the lifting of sanctions with the compliance of the Minsk agreements for the period until the end of the year.

Sanctions were first imposed by the EU against the Russian Federation due to the events in Ukraine and the reunification of Crimea with Russia on August 1, 2014. Later, the sanctions were expanded. Russia imposed a package of response sanctions against the U.S., Australia, Canada, the European Union and Norway on August 7, 2014.

Regarding the latest extension, Dmitry Peskov, Press Spokesman for the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, stated that retaliatory sanctions against the EU will be made promptly. “It is necessary to carry out some bureaucratic procedures to document those decisions, but we expect that the elaboration will be completed very quickly,” noted Peskov.

“Russia was not the initiator, but in this case of the extension of the sanctions, we will act on a reciprocity principle,” he added. It is expected that the list of goods to which the embargo will last remains virtually unchanged.

25 June 2015 22:23