EU ambassadors debate Russia sanctions
PR dla Zagranicy
A meeting of EU ambassadors in Brussels, Thursday, is discussing the possibility of slapping new sanctions on Russia following the alleged shooting down by pro-Russian separatists of a Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 over eastern Ukraine last week.
The new sanctions would see a ban on capital transfers between the EU and Russia, a suspension of trade in advanced technologies, arms, as well as restrictions in the energy sector.
It is possible that the list of people forbidden to enter the EU may also be widened as a result of today’s consultations.
The meeting comes after EU foreign ministers met in Brussels on Tuesday.
However, while the European Commission’s proposals on sanctions foresee a ban in the sale of military equipment to Russia, it would not affect contracts which are already being serviced, including the current sale by France to Russia of its Mistral-class assault ships.
According to diplomatic sources in Brussels, a final decision on sectoral sanctions will most probably not be taken today, Thursday, with consultations set to continue over the next few days. However, the list of persons banned from entering the EU may be announced after today’s meeting.
The next summit of EU ambassadors is planned for 29 July. If any sanctions were to imposed, the correct legal framework will have to be put in place for the decisions to come into force.
Meanwhile, some countries in the EU are weary of placing sanctions on Russia, fearing economic repercussions for the 28-nation bloc.
It is possible that lighter sanctions may be placed on Moscow, such as the sale of advanced technologies and ‘know-how’. An example of this could be a suggestion voiced by EU energy commissioner Gunther Oettinger that the EU could resign from the sale of technical aid for Russia’s exploitation oil and gas in the Arctic. (jb)