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Russia bars EU officials as latest row escalates

Russia bars EU officials as latest row escalates




Tensions between Russia and ทดลองเล่นslotxo the European Union escalated
on Friday (Apr 30) as Moscow barred eight EU officials from entering the country
and Brussels warned it could respond in kind.


In the latest row to strain relations, Moscow said its move was a response to
sanctions imposed by the European Council last month against four top Russian
security officials over the jailing of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny and a violent
police response to protests in his support.


"The European Union continues its policy of unilateral illegitimate restrictive
measures targeting Russian citizens and organisations," the Russian foreign
ministry said in a statement.


"Such actions by the European Union leave no doubt that their true goal is to
restrain the development of our country at any cost," it added.


The EU condemned the move and warned it could respond.


"This action is unacceptable, lacks any legal justification and is entirely groundless.
It targets the European Union directly, not only the individuals concerned," a joint
statement from the heads of the European Council, Commission and Parliament
said, adding "the EU reserves the right to take appropriate measures in response".




In March the EU barred high-ranking officials from entering the bloc and froze
their assets, including head of the Investigative Committee of Russia Alexander
Bastrykin and Russia's general prosecutor Igor Krasnov.


The Russian foreign ministry's list of European officials barred from Russia include
European Parliament President David Sassoli of Italy and Vice President of
the European Commission for Values and Transparency Vera Jourova of the Czech


Speaking on Italian public television RAI on Friday Sassoli said the ban amounted
to a political attack.


"This means that the European Parliament has done its duty in defending
fundamental freedoms in denouncing violations of the rule of law in Russia and
in many countries around the world," Sassoli said.


"But we will not be intimidated: we will continue to say that Alexei Navalny must
be released," he added, promising an "adequate response" from Europe.


Officials from France and Germany, as well as Baltic states Estonia and Latvia
were also barred.


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