EU extends sanctions on Russia 6 months

The European Union has typically extended economic sanctions imposed on Russia for another six months.

This comes in line with the decision of the EU summit last week, where EU member states have now also voted in favor of extending sanctions on Russia until January 31, 2020.

In December 2018, the union was forced to cut trade and investment with Russia specifically billions of losses to European companies caused by the measure, which now lasts for another six months after July 31, 2019.

The decision to extend these sanctions was taken because of Russia's actions towards Ukrainian naval ships at the end of last year.

The Russian Coast Guard forcibly preempted two patrol ships and a trawler from continuing through the Kerch Strait to the Azov Sea.

The Ukrainian sailors were captured and the ships they were on board were confiscated.

For several months, the European Union has demanded the unconditional release of these sailors.

There is no hope of lifting these sanctions on Russia until after the full implementation of the provisions of the peace agreement signed in Minsk to resolve the Ukrainian conflict.

European sanctions were imposed on Russia after a Malaysian plane with 298 people was shot down as it passed over eastern Ukraine in July 2014.

Western investigators say the plane was shot down by Ukrainian separatists loyal to Russia.

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