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Australia still in utter confusion over root causes of Ukrainian crisis — Russian diplomat

March 31, 2015, 19:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Although so much time has passed since the beginning of the Ukrainian events Canberra has not yet identified the real causes of the Ukrainian conflict, a Russian Foreign Ministry official told TASS
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© EPA Archive/JAKUB KAMINSKI

MOSCOW, March 31. /TASS/. Time is ripe for Canberra to take an impartial and independent look at what has been and is happening in Ukraine, a Russian Foreign Ministry official told TASS after Australia’s sanctions against Russia took effect.

"It looks like the echo of unlawful restrictions has travelled as far as Australia," the diplomat said. "The declaration to the effect expanded sanctions against Russia have taken effect sounded rather awkward."

"One cannot but regret that although so much time has passed since the beginning of the Ukrainian events Canberra has not yet identified the real causes of the Ukrainian conflict," the source said.

Apparently, by virtue of its geographic remoteness Australia will get the news of the peace arrangements adopted in Minsk on February 12 and that Russia played a major role in achieving them no earlier than the summer. When it learns the news, it will be able to see that Kiev has been systematically undermining the achieved agreements, he said.

"Isn’t it the right moment for Canberra to assess the developments impartially and on its own?" the diplomat asked.

Earlier, Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said in a news release the expanded sanctions had come into force "in response to Russia’s ongoing threat to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine."

"These sanctions were announced by the Prime Minister on September 1, 2014 and closely match those implemented by the European Union, Canada and the United States. They supplement targeted financial sanctions and travel bans, which Australia imposed in June and September 2014," the news release said.

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