11:52 GMT +315 October 2019
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    A rolled-up political map of Europe. Such maps showing Crimea as part of the Russian Federation are now on sale in Simferopol

    EU Extends Sanctions Against Crimea Another 12 Months

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    The EU sanctions were introduced in 2014 amid a sharp deterioration in relations between Moscow and the West after Crimea rejoined Russia as a result of a referendum which had not been recognized by the EU member states.

    The European Union has prolonged its territorial sanctions on Crimea and Sevastpol by one year, until June 23, 2019, the EU Council said in a statement on Monday.

    "On 18 June 2018, the Council extended the restrictive measures in response to the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol by Russia until 23 June 2019," the statement read.

    The sanctions, limited to the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol, were due to expire this Saturday.

    READ MORE: EU Adds 5 People to Sanction List Over Russian Presidential Vote in Crimea

    In 2014, a crisis in eastern Ukraine and Crimea's reunification with Russia following a referendum prompted the EU to introduce anti-Russian sanctions. Alongside diplomatic measures, such as suspension of the EU-Russia talks on visa matters, restrictive individual measures, such as asset freezes and travel bans for some Russian nationals, as well as economic sanctions, were among the adopted sanctions; they were limited to the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol.

    The sanctions prohibit European citizens and EU-based companies from importing products from Crimea, investing in its economy, or export some categories of goods and tech to Crimea pertaining to transport and energy.

    The Western countries accused Russia of meddling in Ukraine's internal affairs, an allegation Moscow refutes, stressing that the referendum in Crimea was conducted in compliance with international law. 


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