NL could feel burn as EU ratifies Russia sanctions

This morning the European Union officially announced new economic sanctions against Russia. 

The EU leaders already agreed on the new sanctions against Russia on Monday, but its introduction was initially delayed to give the cease fire between the Ukrainian government and the Russian-backed rebels a chance. Due the pressure from a number of European countries the sanctions have now been introduced. The feeling is that continuous pressure on Moscow will increase the chance that the cease fire actually lasts. The west accuses Russia giving the rebels financial and military support, something that Moscow has always denied.

These new sanctions will affect different sectors of the Russian economy, including the financial, energy and defense sectors. Loans from five Russian state banks will be blocked and weapon producer Kalashnikov and oil giant Rosneft will be put on the sanction list. In addition 24 new individuals will be blacklisted.

A spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry calls the new sanctions an unfriendly step. Moscow earlier announced countermeasures if the new EU sanctions are enforced. These countermeasures include bans on imports of fruits, vegetables and dairy products from Europe.

Russian Prime Minister Medvedev also threatened that Russia, in response to the sanctions, will close its airspace for European airlines.

Ukrainian President Poroshenko welcomed the new EU sanctions against Moscow. According to him these sanctions underline European solidarity with Kiev.