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EU expands Russia sanctions to include companies involved in Crimea bridge

The EU today expanded its sanctions against Moscow to include companies that helped build a bridge from mainland Russia to Kremlin-annexed Crimea, which it says violates Ukraine's sovereignty.


PTI 31 Jul 2018, 12:27 PM Russian Federation

The EU today expanded its sanctions against Moscow to include companies that helped build a bridge from mainland Russia to Kremlin-annexed Crimea, which it says violates Ukraine's sovereignty.

The European Union said the six firms and organizations will have their assets in the EU frozen for their role in building the Kerch Bridge, which Russian President Vladimir Putin inaugurated in May.

"EU adds six entities involved in the construction of the Kerch Bridge connecting the illegally annexed Crimea to Russia to the sanctions list," EU member states headlined in a statement.

"Through their actions, they supported the consolidation of Russia's control over the illegally annexed Crimean peninsula," they added.

This, it said, "in turn further undermines the territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence of Ukraine."

Two of the six firms and organizations identified in the EU's Official Journal are controlled by businessman Arkady Rotenberg, a close Putin ally.

The EU has also unleashed a series of sanctions against Moscow for its support for pro-Russian separatists in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

A total of 44 entities have now been hit with EU sanctions against Russia.

Another 155 people, including several close to Putin, have also seen asset freezes and travel bans as a result of the EU blacklist.

The EU says it continues to refuse to recognize the 2014 annexation of Crimea by Russia, which was condemned by the pro-western government in Kiev as well as the United States and the EU, who see it as an illegal land grab.

The peninsula had been hard to reach from southern Russia with long queues of vehicles often forming to board ferries, which cannot always run in winter storms, so the easiest way across is to fly.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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