Wednesday, March 12, 2014

EU official in "warning" to Russia

BRUSSELS -- European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso warned Russia to stop supporting the secession of Crimea or face sanctions.
(Beta/AP, file)
(Beta/AP, file)
"We remain deeply concerned about the situation in Ukraine," said Barroso, addressing members of the European Parliament and strongly condemning "the unprovoked assault of Russia on Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity."
He then announced that the EU will on Wednesday, through a joint statement with the President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy, once again call on Moscow to "withdraw the army to the barracks and to stop supporting the illegal referendum on the secession of the Crimea, or otherwise they will face far-reaching consequences."

"This announcement will leave no doubt about our determination," Barroso revealed.

"The ball is in Russia's yard," said he, and warned that the outcome of the Ukrainian crisis "will have effects that will last for years."

He recalled the conclusions of the extraordinary EU summit last week, in which they announced "three-tier sanctions against Russia."

The first phase, which includes the cancellation of the summit of the G-8 in Sochi and suspension of the visa liberalization has been applied, while in the second phase the EU could impose travel ban and assets freeze of some Russian officials.

A common response to the Ukrainian crisis was also the topic of yesterday's informal meeting of EU leaders in London, while next week meeting of ministers of foreign affairs will be held, followed by a meeting of EU heads of state and government that will take place in Brussels.

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