EU Ready With 8th Round of Sanctions Against Russia
……..As Russia annexes 4 Ukrainian regions
There are indications that the European Union [EU] would come up with the eighth round of sanctions against Russia any moment from now. Part of the eighth package would include further restrictions on trade with Russia.
Russia is reported to have escalated its war in Ukraine by holding illegal referendums in four Ukrainian regions, a development understood to be steps taken in preparation to annexation.
EU diplomats told Reuters last weekend that the 27 EU member states have moved closer to agreeing on the scope of the eighth package of sanctions against Russian entities, individuals, and exports since Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine at the end of February.
“The willingness to go ahead is high, we want to be ready as soon as possible because of everything that is going on,” a senior EU diplomat told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
Over the past ten days, Putin announced a partial mobilization – the first Russian troop mobilization since World War II, which could lead to further isolation and more Western sanctions against Russia, including on its energy exports.
Russia also staged referendums in occupied regions in eastern Ukraine, drawing widespread indignation from around the world, most of which called the voting sham referendums.
Reports say, any moment from now, Putin may announce the annexation of those regions— Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia.
Last Thursday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen presented the Commission’s proposals for the eighth package of sanctions in response to Russia’s escalation of the war in Ukraine.
“Today, in this package, here, we are laying the legal basis for this oil price cap,” von der Leyen said, commenting on the G7-led idea of banning Russian crude oil from imports by sea unless the oil is sold at or below a certain price the buyers expect to set.
A sanctions package would need unanimous approval by all 27 EU member states, but Hungary has said it would block new energy sanctions against Russia.