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Russia Suspended from G-8; EU and USA Put Sanctions
Mar 19, 2014

Group of Eight world powers (G-8) have suspended Russia’s participation in the club amid tensions over Ukraine and Russia’s incursion into Crimea. The other seven members of the group had already suspended preparations for a G-8 summit that Russia is scheduled to host in June in Sochi.

Moderate Sanctions Imposed: The U.S. and European Union announced new sanctions against Russia over its actions in the Crimean Peninsula. The European Union and United States have agreed to impose sanctions against Russian and Ukrainian officials deemed responsible for a contested independence referendum in Crimea.  21 officials would be targeted by travel bans and asset freezes, with more EU measures in few days.

The US has also imposed financial sanctions on 11 Russian and Ukrainian government officials and politicians, including two top advisers to Russian President Vladimir Putin and former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich. The list of officials who will see any property, assets and interests blocked in the US also includes Dmitry Rogozin, Russia's deputy prime minister.

The USA says its sanctions target those who undermine democratic processes and institutions in Ukraine. Amid fears that Russia may move into eastern Ukraine where there is a significant Russian-speaking community, President Barack Obama warned that further provocations would only increase Russia's isolation and exact a greater toll on its economy. If Russia continues to interfere in Ukraine, we stand ready to impose further sanctions.

Obama's order cleared the way to impose sanctions on people associated with the arms industry and targets the personal wealth of cronies of the Russian leadership. France moved forward with cancelling a trip to Moscow by its Defence and Foreign Ministers that had been planned for 18 March, ahead of the EU summit talks to be held in Brussels on 20-21 March where the crisis in Ukraine is expected to top the agenda.

The list of sanctioned by EU, 13 were from Russia and 8 from Ukraine's Crimea region.

Despite these moves, Russian President signed a decree on 17 March recognising Ukraine's Crimea region as a sovereign state.


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