“Russia has taken response measures," she said. “We have no such practice (to publish a Russian blacklist of European officials barred from entering Russia). We do not publish such lists.”
Those Western colleagues who feel they may be on the list should check it through diplomatic channels before traveling to Russia, she said.
“Sanctions are not our caprice. It is only a response measure,” she added.
The West started to impose sanctions on Russia in March 2014 over the events in Ukraine. First, an early EU summit stalled the talks on a visa-free regime and a new base agreement on Russia-EU cooperation. Further on, the sanctions were grouped into three categories - personal, corporate and sectoral.
By the beginning of September, some 420 Russian individuals and 143 companies had been put on the sanction lists of the European Union, the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, Switzerland and Norway.
The sectoral sanctions imposed for a term of one year include an embargo on the supply of arms to Russia and the importation of Russian weapons and related materials, a ban on the delivery of dual-purpose products and technologies to Russia, as well as innovative technologies for Russia’s oil extracting industry.
The fresh sanctions reduce the period of lending for state-run Russian banks Sberbank, VTB, VEB, Gazprombank and Russian Agricultural Bank from 90 to 30 days. Similar sectoral sanctions were earlier imposed by the United States.
In retaliation, Russia imposed a one-year ban on food and raw material imports from the countries that had slapped their sanctions against Moscow.