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EU readies new tough sanctions against Russia, Belarus

The EU also agreed to set up the solidarity trust fund for Ukraine

BRUSSELS, March 25. /TASS/. Leaders of the EU member-states expressed readiness to introducing new tough sanctions against Russia and Belarus, the European Council said in its statement released on Friday.

"The European Union has so far adopted significant sanctions that are having a massive impact on Russia and Belarus, and remains ready to close loopholes and target actual and possible circumvention as well as to move quickly with further coordinated robust sanctions on Russia and Belarus," the European Council said.

"Any attempts to circumvent sanctions or to aid Russia by other means must be stopped," according to the statement.

The EU also agreed to set up the solidarity trust fund for Ukraine, the European Council noted. "The European Council agrees to develop a Ukraine Solidarity Trust Fund and invites its international partners to participate, and calls for preparations to start without delay. It calls on the Commission to continue to provide technical assistance in order to help Ukraine implement necessary reforms," it added.