EU extends sanctions against Crimea for another year

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Ambassadors of the European Union’s 28 member states have approved the decision to extend sanctions against Crimea for another year, according to a source in the Council of the European Union.

According to the source, the permanent representatives of the EU member states approved the decision to extend restrictions imposed on Crimea and the city of Sevastopol as part of the Crimea non-recognition policy.

Now the Council of the European Union needs to endorse the decision. According to the diplomatic source, it may be done at a meeting of the EU foreign ministers scheduled to be held in Luxembourg on June 19.

In 2014, the United States and the European Union imposed sanctions on Moscow over the situation in Ukraine and Crimea’s reunification with Russia. Some of the Russian officials were barred from entering EU countries and the US, their assets were frozen. Besides that, trade, financial and military restrictions were also introduced. T

he EU sanctions against Crimea, particularly ban the imports of any Crimean goods as well as the European investment in Crimea, including real estate purchases, financing business projects and providing services. Besides, the European ships are prohibited to enter Crimean ports except for emergencies.

In addition, the EU banned the exports of goods and technologies concerning the transport sphere, telecommunications, energy sector, oil production and natural resource exploitation.

Blame it on Russia

By accusing Russia of interference, the EU countries try to shift the blame for their domestic problems on Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday.

“Of late, Russia has been accused of attempts to interfere in the domestic affairs of the United States and European countries and trying to undermine Europe’s unity,” Lavrov told students of the Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University in Russia’s westernmost Kaliningrad region.

“It is obvious that instead of critical re-evaluation of developments inside the EU, which is undergoing a systemic crisis, this entire hysteria is aimed at shifting the blame for its own problems and miscalculations on the others,” he said.

Moscow is “sincerely interested that the EU becomes strong and united, and capable to define its foreign policy priorities independently, without any tips from abroad,” Lavrov said.