BRUSSELS (Sputnik) — Answering the question on whether the EU anti-Crimea sanctions will be maintained for a long time, Chizhov told RIA Novosti that such a scenario was "realistic."
"Indirectly, it is proven by the fact that they [anti-Russia sanctions and sanctions specifically against Crimea] have different time spans — economic restrictions and restrictions against Crimea do not end simultaneously, which means that decisions on them will be made at different times," Chizhov said.
The European Union, as well as the United States and some other states, have imposed a series of sanctions against certain sectors of the Russian economy and individuals since 2014, accusing Moscow of interference in Ukraine's internal conflict. Moscow has refuted the allegations, and in August 2014 announced a food embargo on products originating in states that imposed sanctions against it.
Crimea reunified with Russia in March 2014 following a political referendum in the region, in which 96 percent of the population voted in favor of rejoining Russia. Ukraine and the West have refused to recognize the vote, imposing economic sanctions against the peninsula that include investment bans and restrictive measures targeting Crimean individuals and entities.