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European Council’s decision to extend anti-Russia sanctions comes into force

December 20, 2016, 14:32 UTC+3 BRUSSELS

The economic sanctions limit access to EU capital markets for certain Russian majors and impose an export and import ban on trade in arms

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© AP Photo/Virginia Mayo

BRUSSELS, December 20. /TASS/. The European Union decision to extend economic sanctions against Russia entered into force.

"On December 19, 2016, the European Council prolonged the economic sanctions targeting specific sectors of the Russian economy until 31 July 2017," the Council reported.

The economic sanctions prolonged by this decision, in particular, limit access to EU capital markets for certain Russian majors, impose an export and import ban on trade in arms, establish an export ban for dual-use goods and curtail Russia’s access to certain sensitive technologies and services that can be used for oil production and exploration.

In March 2014, the European Union first introduced a blacklist of Russian citizens and companies banned from travelling to the Union member countries and getting access to their bank system. After that, the EU imposed economic restrictions starting from August 1, 2014. In response to that, Russia introduced counter sanctions concerning agricultural sector.

New, sectoral, penalties against Russia were announced in July 2014 over Moscow’s position on Ukrainian events, in particular, what the West claimed was Russia’s alleged involvement in hostilities in Ukraine’s embattled south-east.

Russia responded with imposing on August 6, 2014 a ban on imports of beef, pork, poultry, fish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables and dairy products from Australia, Canada, the EU, the United States and Norway.

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