Russia Approves EU Assets Freeze If Sanctions Hit Moscow

from Moscow says it will respond to any EU sanctions with its own punitive measures. This may include a freeze of foreign companies’ accounts in Russian banks and also confiscation of foreign companies’ properties in Russia. The Upper House of Parliament, the Federation Council, is preparing a new law which would allow the president to sign this law. These are said to be in response to measures taken by the EU leaders at emergency summit in Brussels on Thursday. The heads of state decided to suspend visa and investment talks with Russia over Ukraine and threatened sanctions if no diplomatic progress is made. Statement from the Foreign Ministry: We are bewildered to hear about the intention of the EU to consider temporary suspension of talks with Russia on visa liberalisation due to the situation in Ukraine. Obviously, this is a politicized, un-constructive and un-reasonable approach, contrary to existing agreements between the EU and Russia. Some here say the EU measures cannot be severe due to Europe’s close economic ties with Russia as it’s Europe’s third largest trading partner and its biggest gas and oil supplier. The EU exports to Russia in 2012 totalled $170billion.

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