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West readies sanctions riposte after Crimea vote

Published on Mar 17, 2014 5:58 AM

BRUSSELS (AFP) - The European Union was getting set to unfurl a wave of sanctions against Russia on Sunday, March 16, 2014, after a referendum on the fate of Crimea went ahead despite bitter Western opposition.

The West's riposte will come on early Monday when EU foreign ministers converge in Brussels with visa bans and asset freezes for some of Russia's leading figures likely in the cards.

Similar sanctions by the United States will follow after talks between US Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov failed to bridge differences on Friday.

"There will be some sanctions, there will be some response," if the Crimea vote goes through, Mr Kerry on warned Friday, adding that US President Barack Obama has already "made it clear that there will be consequences".

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