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West to Use Sanctions Further for Strategically Constraining Russia - Putin

© Sputnik / Alexei Filippov / Go to the photo bankA view at the Moscow Kremlin, Historical Museum, Red Square and Saint Basil's Cathedral.
A view at the Moscow Kremlin, Historical Museum, Red Square and Saint Basil's Cathedral. - Sputnik International
During the live Q&A session, Vladimir Putin said that the West is unlikely to lift anti-Russian sanctions, as it is a matter of strategically constraining Russia.

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Russia should not expect Western sanctions to be lifted because they are being used as a strategy to contain Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday.

“In regard to sanctions, then actually we had a discussion about them with businessmen. I told them that they should most likely not expect the sanctions to be lifted soon because this is an issue of a political character. These issues are strategic for several of our partners in working with Russia and holding back our development,” Putin said during a Q&A session in Moscow.

Putin said that Russia should not be distressed over Western sanctions but instead use them to enter new levels of development.

“We need to use this situation that has come from the sanctions to move on to new levels of development. I hope that this will lead us to the development in advanced technology of the economy at a more rapid pace than existed earlier.”

The Russian president added that attempts to harm Russia with sanctions were “useless and senseless.”

“I think that our partners will realize this at some point and at least try to find a compromise instead of imposing clichés, which they think are right,” he said.

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Since the reunification of Crimea with Russia and the escalation of a conflict in Ukraine last spring, the European Union, the United States and a number of other countries have imposed several rounds of economic sanctions against Moscow, blaming it for interfering in Ukraine's internal affairs – the claim that Moscow has repeatedly denied.

In response to Western sanctions, in August 2014 Moscow introduced a ban on the import of a range of food products from the countries that imposed restrictions on Russia.

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