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“There is no doubt that the situation is extremely worrying,” Bildt told Radio Sweden. “This is the most worrying situation in European security policy I have ever had to face for quite a long period of time - 25 years.”
On Thursday, Russia announced suspension of food imports from Norway, Canada, Australia, the United States and the 28-nation European Union worth billions of dollars in retaliation for sanctions imposed by those nations in recent weeks over events in Ukraine.
The ban, targeting cheese, fish, beef, pork, fruit, vegetables and dairy products over the next 12 months, is expected to seriously affect Western economies.
Combined with other import bans imposed earlier this year, the new trade measures cover Western imports worth $9.1 billion in 2013, according to Russian customs data. Exports of sanctioned products from Europe to Russia were worth $6.5 billion last year.