The European Union approves new sanctions amid a pledge to intensify pressure on Moscow


The European Union vowed to increase pressure on Moscow “until Ukraine is liberated” as it passed a 10th round of sanctions against Russia on Saturday, a day after the first anniversary of the invasion.

“We now have the most severe sanctions ever, draining Russia’s war arsenal and eating into its economy,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen wrote on Twitter, adding that the bloc was increasing pressure on those trying to circumvent EU sanctions.

The European Union foreign policy Chief Josep Borrell warned that the bloc will continue to impose more sanctions on Moscow.

“We’ll continue to increase pressure on Russia and will do so for as long as it takes until Ukraine is freed from brutal Russian aggression,” he said in a statement.

Borrell added that the latest sanctions target the banking sector, technology that can be used for civil and military purposes, and advanced technologies.

The Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the new sanctions, calling them “new strong steps against the military industry and financial sector of the terrorist state”.

In his nightly video address, Zelensky said Ukraine was working to extend sanctions even further to Russia’s nuclear sector, Russian state-owned Rosatom nuclear energy Company, and all those involved in the terrorist state’s missile program and nuclear extortion.

There has been no reaction from Russia so far to the new sanctions.

Russia’s human rights commissioner, Tatyana Moskalkova, said her inclusion on the list violates the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and all other international laws relating to human rights.

The package adds electronic components used in Russian battlefield weapons systems to the list of prohibited exports, including drones, missiles and helicopters, as well as electronic integrated circuits and thermal cameras.

It also imposes stricter restrictions on 96 other entities due to the support of the Russian army and industrial complex, including for the first time seven Iranian entities that manufacture military drones used by Moscow.

Additional restrictions were imposed on imports of goods that generate significant revenue for Russia, such as asphalt and synthetic rubber.

The European Union separately imposed sanctions on 11 individuals and seven entities linked to the Wagner Group, whose mercenaries are fighting in Ukraine and are also involved in conflicts in African countries such as Mali.

Borrell said that Wagner’s activities endanger international peace and security because it does not operate within any legal framework.

Those blacklisted include two leaders of Wagner group who participated in taking control of Solidar town last month and Wagner’s chief in Mali, according to an EU statement.

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