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Austrian Parliament Rejects Proposal on Lifting Anti-Russian Sanctions

The Austrian Parliament rejected the proposal of the Freedom Party of Austria (FPOe) of immediate lifting of the anti-Russian economic sanctions, FPOe Member Axel Kassegger told Sputnik on Thursday.

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VIENNA (Sputnik) — The Austrian Parliament rejected the proposal of the Freedom Party of Austria (FPOe) regarding immediate lifting of economic sanctions against the Russia, FPOe Member Axel Kassegger told Sputnik on Thursday.

"The proposal, of course, was rejected again," Kassegger said.

The party member pointed out that the FPOe had been submitting such proposals since 2015 as it considered the sanctions to be harmful both for Austria and Russia.

"The economic damage is rather significant as in recent years we established very good economic relations with the Russian side in previous years, serving to the interests of both countries," Kassegger said, adding that in 2013 Russia was the 10th largest importer of Austrian goods.

According to Kassegger, the positive track of relations was blocked and undermined by sanctions, which led to significant decrease in the Austrian-Russian level of import and export.

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The politician pointed out that the party submitted about 60 proposals, which it deemed important for the country's future, including the sanctions issue.

Kassegger added that the FPOe would further continue calling for sanctions cancellation.

On June 2, Chancellor of Austria Christian Kern told Sputnik that the anti-Russia sanctions were very economically disadvantageous for the country's economy, costing Austria almost 0.3 percent of its GDP.

Since 2014, relations between Russia and the European Union deteriorated amid the crisis in Ukraine, and Brussels, Washington and their allies have introduced several rounds of anti-Russia sanctions over Moscow's alleged involvement in the Ukrainian conflict.

Russia has repeatedly refuted the allegations, warning that the Western sanctions are counterproductive and undermine global stability.

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