G7 leaders agree on new sanctions against Russia

Source:Xinhua Published: 2014-4-26 16:50:30

The leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) industrialized nations agreed Friday night to impose more sanctions on Russia over its "inaction" in easing the tension in eastern Ukraine.

"We have now agreed that we will move swiftly to impose additional sanctions on Russia," said a joint statement issued by leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States, plus the presidents of the European Council and the European Commission.

The announcement came as Moscow staged military drills on the joint border with Ukraine Thursday, responding to Kiev's "anti-terror" operation that resulted in the deaths of five pro-Moscow protesters.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday it was Kiev not implementing the agreement, and that Moscow had been eager to assist in the de-escalation of tension as agreed in last week's Geneva deal.

The minister accused the West of attempting to "capture" Ukraine for geopolitical ambitions, rather than the interests of the Ukrainian people.

In Friday's announcement, the G7 nations urged Russia to join efforts to seek a "diplomatic resolution" of the crisis, threatening "broader, coordinated sanctions," including sectoral measures, in the event of further "destabilizing" moves from Russia.

The United States and EU had hit dozens of Russians and pro-Russia Ukrainians, including close allies of Russian President Vladimir Putin, with travel bans and asset freezes following Moscow's annexation of Crimea last month.

However, the 28-member bloc remains divided over full trade and economic sanctions against Russia, considering the huge gas supplies from the country and their broad economic ties.

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