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EU formally adopts Russia sanctions

Published on Aug 1, 2014 3:37 AM

BRUSSELS (AFP) - The European Union formally adopted broad economic sanctions against Russia on Thursday, hoping they will force Moscow to reverse course on the Ukraine crisis. They were published in the EU's Official Journal late in the day, meaning that they will come into effect on Friday.

The new measures, finally agreed earlier this week after months of hesitation, target Russia's banking, defence and energy sectors in view of its "actions destabilising the situation in eastern Ukraine," a statement said.

A first step limits access by Russian state-owned banks to Europe's financial markets, chief among them London, which will increase their cost of doing business and hinder their contribution to the economy. Five banks were named, among them the largest in Russia: Sberbank, VTB, Gazprombank, VEB and Rosselkhozbank.

EU nationals and companies will no longer be allowed to buy or sell new bonds, stocks or other debt instruments with a maturity of more than 90 days issued by such banks, the statement said.

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