EU and US to tighten sanctions on Russia

The move comes as Russia continues to pour arms and troops into eastern Ukraine, despite an ultimatum given by EU leaders last week.

“A new package of proposed EU sanctions against Russia has been prepared and is being considered by member states,” CNN quotes EU spokeswoman Maja Kosijancic.

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“But a decision on implementing them will only be taken in light of developments on the ground. If there is a ceasefire agreed in Minsk today, member states would look how serious it was and decide whether to go forward.”

More peace talks are scheduled in Minsk on Friday, but a much-talked-about ceasefire has so far failed to hold.

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“In view of the gravity of the situation the Council considers it appropriate to take further restrictive measures in response to Russia’s actions destabilising the situation in Ukraine,” the EU’s draft text says.

More names and companies are to be added to a blacklist, which has been expanded to “natural or legal persons, entities or bodies conducting transactions with the separatist groups in the Donbass region of Ukraine.”

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