MOSCOW (Sputnik), Anna Liatsou – The sanctions, imposed on Russia by the European Union, badly affected Cyprus, Official Government Spokesman of Cyprus Nikos Christodoulides told Sputnik.
The spokesman expressed hope that relations between EU and Russia would soon be restored. He stressed that Nicosia has “from the very beginning voiced its support for productive dialogue with the Russian Federation”.
Christodoulides also underlined that Cyprus shares the position that “sanctions against Russia are not an effective way to address the Ukrainian crisis.”
The Ukrainian crisis prompted the 28-nation bloc to impose several rounds of economic sanctions against Russian individuals and entities. Moscow responded last August with a one-year ban on food imports from the EU, as well as against other countries that introduced anti-Russia restrictions.
Nikos Christodoulides was referring to an incident when the European Council (EC) published a document without a Cyprus’ feedback on it.
“We certainly hope that it was a very unfortunate misunderstanding of the procedure to which we openly protested,” Christodoulides said.
Christodoulidis explained that Cyprus did not have the opportunity to participate in the discussion process as “the time limitations regarding this particular statement were very narrow”.
The spokesman told Sputnik that Cyprus’ concerns were shared by other EU member states.
On January 27, the European Council issued a statement on new anti-Russia sanctions without some EU members’ consent, whereas the statement said all 28 EU leaders had agreed on the content. Cyprus and Greece expressed their disapproval of the European Council’s actions over the matter.
The EU, the United States and their allies have accused Moscow of participating in the military conflict in eastern Ukraine and have imposed several rounds of sanctions against Russia.
Moscow has repeatedly stated that it is not a party to the Ukrainian internal conflict, and has insisted on a peaceful dialogue between the warring sides.