13:59 Jun. 21, 2016
Decision to be finally adopted by the EU Council by the end of July
The European Union ambassadors have extended economic sanctions against Russia for its 2014 takeover of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula and aggression in the country's eastern regions for another six months.
The Committee of Permanent Representatives of EU member states (COREPER) made the relevant decision on June 21, according to the EU Council, Ukrainian news agency UNIAN reports.
"We can confirm COREPER has agreed to prolong the restrictive measures in view of Russia's action destabilising the situation in Ukraine to further assess the implementation of the Minsk agreements," said the EU Council.
The sanctions were prolonged for another six months - until January 31, 2017. This decision should be finally adopted by the EU Council. The date of the relevant meeting is not fixed yet but the meeting will take place before the end of July.
After putting boots on the ground in Ukraine in March 2014, Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimea and began to destabilize the situation in the Donbas region (eastern Ukraine). Kremlin continues supplying weapons to Donbas militants as well as deploying mercenaries and its regular troops to eastern Ukraine.
The European Union, the United States and other countries imposed sanctions against Russia in response to Ukraine's Black Sea peninsula annexation and aggression in eastern Ukraine.
EU sanctions restrict cooperation with Russian banks and also limit imports, exports, as well as oil, gas and arms trading.