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Kremlin comments on Merkel, Hollande offer to extend sanctions against Russia

The Kremlin believes sanctions lead to a deadlock

MOSCOW, December 13. /TASS/. Anti-Russian sanctions lead to a deadlock, they cannot facilitate solutions to any problems, Russian Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov told reporters.

However, the lifting of sanctions depends on the West’s willingness to cooperate with Russia, he added, commenting on German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande’s statements in which they said they wanted to extend anti-Russian sanctions.

"We don’t usually comment on these matters because it is up to our western counterparts to decide whether they wanted to cooperate or to continue with sanctions. We believe that (sanctions) lead to a deadlock, they don’t facilitate solutions to any problems," the Kremlin aide said.

When asked if Tokyo could ease anti-Russian restrictions, Ushakov said that "Japan has not yet announced that it planned to lift sanctions." "The fact that Japan joined sanctions doesn’t help boost bilateral trade and economic ties as well as political relations," the Kremlin aide noted.