MOSCOW, March 21. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia will respond with reciprocal measures to any sanctions imposed against it. “As for sanctions, we will act basing on the principle of reciprocity,” presidential spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Friday. He stressed that the imposing of sanctions “is totally unacceptable for Russia”. “Each time we will respond reciprocally,” he underlined. The Kremlin pledged that the state will protect Russians against whom Western countries imposed sanctions over Moscow’s position on the Ukrainian crisis.
The press secretary of the Russian president expressed hope that the western sanctions would not impact regular citizens. However, he stressed the “absurdness of such sanctions”, since “the black lists contain unexplainable surnames and legal entities”.
“It is natural that the state will protect this individuals and legal entities, providing them necessary assistance,” Peskov said.
The Kremlin regrets that the United States could be making plans to impose sanctions against Russian economy sectors.
“We regret that such plans are probably being made,” Dmitry Peskov told journalists.
He said the international community had more important things to do, including anti-crisis measures for the global economy.
The Kremlin considers the lowering of S&P’s rating of Russia a result of an instruction, and not of fact-based situation. “It is clear that it (the decision to lower the rating) was top-bottom, and not objective,” Dmitry Peskov said. He added that such ratings lower the trustworthiness to such agencies. On Thursday, S&P rating agency revised the sovereign credit rating of Russia from stable to negative in regard of possible consequences of US and EU sanctions.
March 21, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin held consultations with permanent members of Russia’s Security Council. At the meeting, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia Sergei Lavrov informed that western partners continue backing unilateral focused sanctions. In particular, the USA expanded the black list against Russia, including bank Rossiya.
Lavrov added that Kiev continued making controversial statement regarding relations with Russia. In particular, Ukraine stated about its intention to introduce visa regime.
As concerns the first case — the US sanctions, and the second case — Ukraine’s introduction of visa regulations, I think we should still refrain from retaliatory moves. First of all, I'm speaking about visa rules with Ukraine. If we introduce visa regulations, millions of innocent Ukrainians, who are not wealthy even without this, work in Russia and earn not a big money to support their families, will suffer. We don’t need to do this. Vladimir Putin President of Russia