Global Affairs

When punishing Russia goes too far

Calls for a total visa ban, designating Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism and even its break-up are wrongheaded and dodge a more important question.

Western countries are advocating more radical anti-Russian measures, including a total ban on travel for Russian citizens. PHOTO: AFP
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Back in February, when Russian troops invaded Ukraine, the United States, most of Europe and a significant number of other countries around the world imposed economic sanctions on Russia. The purpose of these sanctions was narrowly defined and clearly articulated: to inflict a heavy price on Russia for violating basic principles of international law, hoping that this would force the Russian government to stop its aggression.

Yet after six months of terrible bloodshed and the war in Ukraine showing no signs of abating, many Western countries are advocating more radical anti-Russian measures. Everything imaginable is now on offer, from appeals for a total ban on travel for all Russian citizens to calls for the break-up of Russia itself.

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