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    Impact of Anti-Russian Sanctions Failed to Meet West’ Expectations - DW

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    Deutshe Welle interviewed German, Polish and Russian analysts and found out that the effect of anti-Russian sanctions failed to meet expectations of those who imposed them.

    The US and EU Sanctions against Russia, imposed with regard to the Ukrainian conflict last year, have not had the desired effect — neither political, nor economic, DW expert interviews revealed.

    German political expert, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation in Kiev, Andreas Umland, claims that anti-Russian sanctions had the opposite effect.  According to him, the restrictive measures were incomplete and insufficient and made Russia think that the EU and US response will be moderate.

    The effect of the second phase of sanctions, when not only personal, but also sectoral restrictions were imposed, proved to be mixed. According to Umland, Russia has not changed its policy, but "there are signs that some of the Russian elite are dissatisfied with this situation and are seeking for the sanctions’ abolishment."

    Adam Sauer, Director of the Poland-Canada Democracy Support Program for Ukraine, who originally comes from Warsaw, argues that the effect of the sanctions has not met the expectations of the West. Sanctions have proved to be inefficient as a political tool and were followed by the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine.

    "Their economic impact is also questionable. In any case, they are not the main factor causing the growing recession in Russia," Sauer said.

    Sergey Markedonov, Associate Professor at the Russian State University for the Humanities, claims that Western countries have not managed to reach their main goal.

    "If the sanctions were designed to force Russia to abandon some of its foreign policy goals, they have not had any effect. The external pressure has not led to mass social protests against the government,” Markedonov said.

    According to the expert, Western expectations that Russia’s society would increasingly become disappointed and dissatisfied with Crimea becoming a part of Russia have not come true. Sanctions have, on the contrary, strengthened positions of the Russian authorities and increased anti-Western sentiment, Markedonov claims.


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