Date
17 August 2017
An artist pays tribute to the downed Malaysia Airlines jet. The United States and Europe are ramping up pressure on Russia over the crash of the airliner. Photo: AFP
An artist pays tribute to the downed Malaysia Airlines jet. The United States and Europe are ramping up pressure on Russia over the crash of the airliner. Photo: AFP

West agrees tougher Russia sanctions

United States and European leaders have agreed to impose wider sanctions on Russia’s financial, defense and energy sectors, Reuters reported.

The agreement came as Ukraine said its forces advanced toward the crash site of Malaysian flight MH17.

The new sanctions were discussed by US President Barack Obama and leaders of Germany, Britain, France and Italy in a conference call Monday.

These are aimed at increasing pressure on Russian President Vladimir Putin after the downing of a Malaysian airliner over territory held by pro-Moscow rebels in eastern Ukraine earlier this month.

The crash has led to calls for much tougher action against Russia from Western countries which had previously imposed sanctions but only on small numbers of individuals and firms.

The stronger measures include closing the bloc’s capital markets to Russian state banks, an embargo on future arms sales and restrictions on energy technology and technology that could be used for defense, the report said.

In Brussels, EU sources said diplomats had reached preliminary agreement on a new list of companies and people, including associates of Putin, to be targeted by asset freezes.

Western states believe that the rebels brought down Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, with the loss of 298 lives, using a missile supplied by Russia. 

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