The European Union extended on 12 December the economic sanctions against Russia over the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, for six more months.
The measures were first implemented in 2014 after Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula, and were set to expire in January. According to the United Nations, about 13,000 people have died since the beginning of the conflict.
The announcement follows the Paris meeting between Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky. During the meeting, they agreed a ceasefire and a prisoner exchange, but failed to agree on other key issues.
The talks were mediated by French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who, after the meeting, recommended an extension of the restrictive measures against Moscow, till the end of July 2020.
The EU’s economic sanctions against Russia include: limited access to EU capital markets for certain Russian banks and companies; export and import ban on trade in arms; export ban for dual-use goods for military use or military end users in Russia; as well as reducing Russian access to technologies that can be used for oil production.