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EU: Sanctions against Russia depend on its consent to form task group on Ukraine

March 05, 2014, 12:28 UTC+3
"We cannot accept that Russia brings its troops to a neighboring country," French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius said
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French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius

French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius

© EPA/JULIEN WARNAND

PARIS, March 5. /ITAR-TASS/. The European Union will consider the issue of introducing sanctions against Russia depending on the country’s consent to form a contact group on Ukraine and on launching discussions of the plan to settle the crisis. French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius stated this on Wednesday.

“At present, France and Germany are making efforts to form a contact group on the situation in Ukraine,” Fabius said.

“Russia is still our partner,” head of the French diplomatic service noted. “However, we cannot accept that it brings its troops to a neighboring country.”

Fabius confirmed that on Thursday, the issue of possible introduction of sanctions against Russia would be considered at the EU summit. “Sanctions may be introduced, if the tension doesn’t decrease,” the minister noted. “We expect that Russia would announce the start of dialogue with Ukraine, in particular, with the contact group.”

On Tuesday, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin answered to journalists’ questions regarding the situation in Ukraine and Moscow’s stance in his residence in Novo-Ogarevo. As for the West’s harsh reaction on Russia’s stance, Putin recalled that Russia’s actions are based on standards of international law and bilateral commitments, unlike the USA, that first “articulate for themselves their geopolitical targets, and then tuck the rest of the world”. Answering a question about the threat of sanctions from Western countries, Putin noted that “those who are going to introduce sanctions against Russia should think about the consequences it will have for them, as damages will be mutual”.

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