Hololei: G7 totally united on Russian sanctions
The G7 meeting of the world's leading economies showed the nations stand united in extending sanctions against Russia, Henrik Hololei, deputy secretary general of the European Commission, said.
Hololei, who was at the G7 meeting on Sunday and Monday in Germany, said it is unlikely the Minsk agreements will materialize fully by the end of the year.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and US President Barack Obama both criticized Moscow for the recent surge in violence in eastern Ukraine.
“Our European partners reaffirmed that they will maintain sanctions on Russia until the Minsk agreements are fully implemented, which means extending the EU's existing sectoral sanctions beyond July. And the G7 is making it clear that, if necessary, we stand ready to impose additional, significant sanctions against Russia,” Obama said.
A spokesman for the Kremlin said the seven nations have different approaches in dealing with Russia, a claim which Hololei refuted. He said all agreed that current sanctions should be extended and if the violence escalates, then expanded.
“EU member states, their heads and government leaders, and G7 states need to discuss among themselves what the next possible steps can be. It is too early to talk about the normalization of relations between Russia and the Western world in the current situation,” Hololei said.