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May 14, 2014

Six powers, Iran enter crunch phase of nuclear diplomacy

VIENNA (Reuters) – Six world powers and Iran launch the decisive phase of diplomacy over Tehran’s nuclear work during three-day talks starting in Vienna on Wednesday, with the aim of resolving their decade-old dispute by July 20 despite skepticism a deal is possible.

After three months of broad discussions about expectations rather than possible compromises, the sides now plan to start drafting the text of a final accord that could put an end to years of hostility and mistrust and curtail the risk of a new war in the Middle East.

May 12, 2014

EU adds top Putin aide, two Crimea energy firms to sanctions list

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union imposed sanctions on Monday on a top aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin and the commander of Russian paratroopers as well as two confiscated Crimean energy companies, raising pressure on Moscow over its actions in Ukraine.

Putin’s first deputy chief of staff, Vyacheslav Volodin, and Vladimir Shamanov, the commander of Russian airborne troops that took part in Russia’s occupation of Ukraine’s Crimea region in March, were among 13 people added to the EU’s sanctions list.

May 12, 2014

EU widens sanctions a notch to raise pressure on Russia over Ukraine

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union was set to take a cautious step towards extending sanctions against Russia on Monday, targeting companies, as well as people, linked to Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region.

Ministers meeting in Brussels also discussed what would trigger more hard-hitting economic sanctions on the Russian economy with big EU powers Germany, France and Britain all threatening tougher action against Moscow if it undermined the May 25 Ukrainian presidential election.

May 12, 2014

EU moves cautiously to raise pressure on Russia over Ukraine

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union is set to step up pressure on Russia on Monday by taking a first cautious step towards extending sanctions to companies, as well as people, linked to Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region.

Discussions among EU foreign ministers in Brussels will again be dominated by the Ukraine crisis after pro-Moscow rebels held a referendum on self-rule in parts of eastern Ukraine on Sunday and fighting flared up again.

May 8, 2014

EU lays groundwork for sanctions on Russian companies

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union governments have laid the groundwork for possible sanctions against Russian companies, including energy giants, over Ukraine, but diplomats say there is little appetite for now to impose any far-reaching measures.

Senior EU diplomats reached a preliminary agreement late on Wednesday to expand the legal criteria for imposing sanctions on Russia, with the goal of making it easier to freeze the assets of companies involved in the Ukraine crisis.

May 7, 2014

EU reaches deal to expand legal basis for Russia sanctions: diplomats

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union governments reached a preliminary agreement on Wednesday to expand the legal criteria for targeting people and companies with sanctions to pressure Russia over Ukraine, paving the way for new listings as early as Monday, diplomats said.

The decision should make it easier for the EU to target Russian companies – something it hasn’t done yet, unlike the United States – but needs formal backing during a meeting of EU foreign ministers on Monday.

Apr 14, 2014

EU agrees to expand Russia sanctions, may hold emergency summit on Ukraine

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – The European Union agreed on Monday to step up sanctions against Russia over Ukraine by expanding a list of people targeted with asset freezes and visa bans, and said the bloc could hold an emergency summit next week to adopt further measures.

EU foreign ministers acted in response to a deepening of the crisis in Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists ignored an ultimatum on Monday to leave occupied government buildings in the east of the country.

Apr 14, 2014

EU could hold emergency summit to agree new sanctions on Russia

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – The European Union could hold an emergency summit next week to impose further sanctions against Russia if there is no breakthrough at talks with Ukraine scheduled for Thursday in Geneva, France’s foreign minister said on Monday.

At a meeting in Luxembourg, several EU foreign ministers threatened Moscow with new sanctions over its actions in eastern Ukraine, although some said diplomacy should be given time before firm decisions are taken.

Apr 14, 2014

EU threatens Russia with more sanctions over Ukraine

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – The European Union threatened Russia with more sanctions on Monday over its actions in eastern Ukraine, which Britain said was being destabilized by Moscow, although some EU states said diplomacy should be given more time.

Ukraine dominated talks among EU foreign ministers after Kiev threatened military action against pro-Russian separatists occupying government buildings in the east.

Apr 13, 2014

EU to discuss more Russia sanctions, police support in Ukraine

LUXEMBOURG (Reuters) – European Union foreign ministers will hold talks on Monday to discuss how to toughen sanctions against Russia for its actions in Ukraine without losing the support of some EU governments worried about antagonizing a power with an energy stranglehold over Europe.

Under discussion are possible new economic sanctions, as well as an EU mission to train police and other law-enforcement officials in Ukraine and the bloc’s approach to issuing visas and trade with the Crimean peninsula, which was annexed by Moscow in March after popular protests toppled pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovich.

    • About Justyna

      "Justyna covers EU foreign policy in Brussels with a focus on Balkans and Turkey, as well immigration, security and human rights in the European Union. Previously she was a bureau chief in Romania and Bulgaria, and wrote about financial markets in London and economic policy in Poland."
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