BRUSSELS, July 22 (RIA Novosti) – The European Commission will present new sanctions against Moscow targeting Russia's financial and defense sectors on July 24, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said Tuesday.
“We’ve asked the Commission and External Action Service to prepare proposals for action including an access to capital markets, defense, dual-use goods and sensitive technologies, including in the energy sector. These proposals will be presented on Thursday,” Ashton said after today's EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels.
Following the meeting, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said that the EU agreed to step up its pressure on the sides not contributing to the settlement of Ukraine crisis.
“We want to increase pressure on those who are not willing to take part in resolving the current crisis,” the minister said.
After the meeting, the EU foreign ministers made three major decisions, according to Steinmeier.
First of all, the EU decided to expand the blacklist targeting those “supporting Russian decision makers” and responsible for “the destabilization of eastern Ukraine.” Secondly, the Council agreed to accelerate the preparation of the sanctions list. Thirdly, the EU foreign ministers requested the Commission to propose additional restrictive measures, including in the field of sensitive technology, Steinmeier said.
Earlier this year, the United Stated and the European Union have already imposed targeted sanctions against a number of Russian officials and companies as a response to Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
After the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine, Washington has been pushing the EU to implement further sanctions against Moscow.
Russian Foreign Ministry has repeatedly called the language of sanctions counterproductive and said these measures would have a boomerang effect on European economies.
President Vladimir Putin said the new sanctions required a careful look but warned they could bring the US-Russian ties to a dead end.