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Sanctions unable to make Russia quit its independent Ukrainian policy - experts

May 05, 2014, 18:10 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara

MOSCOW, May 05. /ITAR-TASS/. Amid the bloodshed in Ukraine, the US and EU countries keep blaming Russia for the escalation of the crisis and threatening Moscow with new sanctions. Yet most experts believe the West will not scare Russia into abandoning its independent political course.

Neither Washington nor Brussels have provided official disapproval of those guilty of the May 2 tragedy in Odessa, where the arson of the Trade Union House by the illegal armed group Right Sector left 46 dead and about 200 others injured.

Instead of taking tough measures against the government in Kiev, which is acting against its own citizens, the ambassadors of 28 EU countries are going to discuss additional sanctions against Russia at the scheduled meeting in Brussels on Monday.

Following a meeting in Washington last Friday, US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that a package of sanctions against certain sectors in Russia might be realized, unless Moscow starts deescalating the Ukrainian crisis. If the situation does not stabilize ahead of the presidential election in Ukraine, sanctions will inevitably follow, Merkel said.

Over the last weeks, some major German companies, including the chemical consortium BASF, Siemens Group, Volkswagen, Adidas и Deutsche Bank, have voiced disapproval of broader economic sanctions against Russia, where about 6,200 German companies are active - more than in all EU countries in total. According to The Wall Street Journal, US companies, which risk much less with Russia than the EU countries, have also expressed their fears over further sanctions to the Obama Administration.

“The US traditional foreign policy establishment where people from the 1990s are in the majority, is used to seeing Russia on its knees begging for charity. They perceive the existence of a different Russia as a personal humiliation and insult. These people are prompting Obama to pursue a very tough course against Moscow, since Russia refused to accept Western rules in Ukraine,” the Dean of the Faculty of International Economics and Foreign Affairs at the Higher School of Economics, Sergei Karaganov, said in an interview to Rossiyskaya Gazeta. “The world is decreasingly West-oriented. And though Russia, due to its character and boldness, has overtly challenged the West, everybody realizes that this new Russia is backed by new great countries who want to see her victory. Therefore, the current events are a potentially major turning point in the relations between the world and the West.”

“The tougher the US position on sanctions against Russia, the more allies it will lose. Notably, the European Union is not imposing sanctions against business tycoons. Europe is clearly unwilling to cause economic aggravation. The Russian market is one of the leading ones that are open for the EU, so European companies are not going to yield it,” believes Vice-President of the Center for Strategic Communications Dmitry Abzalov.

“Sanctions should not be underestimated. But nor should they be overestimated. Russia is a self-reliant country and it will certainly find strength to overcome them,” believes Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee Leonid Kalashnikov.

“The West has not condemned the Ukrainian government’s actions against its people, because Washington and Brussels support derussification of Ukraine. EU countries support Ukrainian radicals and nationalists, thus discarding traditional European values,” Director of the Institute for Political Studies, member of the Russian Civic Chamber Sergei Markov told ITAR-TASS. "One should not exaggerate Europe’s humanity. When humanity is an obstacle in the way of obtaining political dividends and gains, this Western-model humanity is pushed aside,” Markov added.

“Russia’s historical mission in the modern world is to stop candidates for world hegemony, including those responsible for the current situation in Ukraine. Since the unipolar world is collapsing in our full view thanks to Russia’s actions, the US is attempting to lean on the European Union to introduce another sanction package against Moscow. But the US and EU will only see their attempts result in an even stronger consolidation of the Russian people in the face of the foreign threat,” believes the expert.


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