BERLIN, November 25. /TASS/. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Tuesday economic sanctions against Russia for Moscow’s position on Ukrainian developments are still necessary.
“They (sanctions) are inevitable while Russia makes no or few efforts to overcome the crisis,” Merkel said at a congress of European Family Business in Berlin.
She admitted that the sanctions negatively affect the European, including German, economy.
The positions of Russia and Western nations on the Ukrainian developments differ radically. Russia has repeatedly denied any involvement in the intra-Ukrainian crisis, but the West accuses Moscow of participation in clashes in Ukraine’s war-torn south-east and has subjected Russia to sanctions.
Sanctions and reactions
Russian officials and companies came under the first batch of sanctions, including visa bans and asset freezes, after Russia incorporated Crimea in mid-March after a coup in Ukraine in February. New, sectoral, penalties against Russia were announced in late July over Moscow’s position on Ukrainian events.
Russia responded with imposing on August 6 a one-year ban on imports of beef, pork, poultry, fish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables and dairy products from Australia, Canada, the European Union, the United States and Norway.
Crisis in eastern Ukraine
According to the United Nations, more than 4,000 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands have fled Ukraine’s south-east as a result of clashes between Ukrainian troops and local militias in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions during Kiev’s military operation, conducted since mid-April, to regain control over the breakaway territories, which call themselves the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s republics.
The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on a ceasefire at talks mediated by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) on September 5 in Belarusian capital Minsk two days after Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed his plan to settle the situation in the east of Ukraine.