“We’ve been clear that this is not the time for business as usual with Russia,” Harf said during a press briefing on Monday. “We’ve stressed with our European allies and partners the importance of unity in pressing Russia to stop fueling conflict in eastern Ukraine. That’s certainly something we feel very strongly about.”
Russia and Cyprus signed nine documents on cooperation, including military, naval and anti-terrorism agreements during the visit of Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades to Moscow.
The two countries’ foreign ministers also agreed to a cooperation program in the fields of science, education and culture for the 2015-2018 period, as well as one on government collaboration against drug trafficking and abuse.
Anastasiades explained that all European Union (EU) member states without exception have experienced the negative effect of Western sanctions against Russia.
Last year, Cyprus upheld the EU sanctions against Russia over accusations that Moscow is interfering in Ukraine's internal affairs, despite the fact that Russia has repeatedly denied the accusations.
Russia responded to the restrictions with a year-long embargo on certain food imports from the countries that imposed the sanctions.