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West unites against Russia's invasion of Ukraine

West unites against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

Action. interactions. Canada, the United States and the European Union united against Moscow on Tuesday in response to what appeared to be an increasingly visible “beginning of a Russian invasion of Ukraine,” according to the White House, by announcing a series of major economic sanctions targeting Russia.

“These sanctions represent an important step and target those responsible for violating Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” the prime minister said. Justin Trudeau At a press conference at the end of the day. It will remain in place until the territorial integrity of Ukraine is restored. »

These decisions do not seem to shake Vladimir Putin.

The next day for Recognition of the independence of two pro-Russian regions of UkraineThe head of the Kremlin declared the peace agreements negotiated with the former Soviet Republic of these territories in the east of the country occupied since 2014 null and void, and declared the establishment of diplomatic relations with the “republics” of Donetsk and Lugansk, not recognized by the international community.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the measure was aimed at establishing “comprehensive cooperation” with Russia, and “strengthening peace, stability and security” in the region. On Tuesday, the Kremlin chief also got the green light from his parliament to deploy soldiers in the separatist regions in order to “defend” them against what Moscow describes as possible aggression from Kiev. Propaganda deemed troubling by NATO, describing the current escalation in the voice of its Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg, as “the most dangerous moment for European security in a generation”.

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“Moscow has moved from a covert attempt to destabilize Ukraine to overt military action,” he added, referring to a “large-scale attack” on Ukraine planned by Russia. We are witnessing a continuous military build-up. We are seeing more and more armed forces move out of the camps into combat formations ready to strike. »

set of penalties

In response, Washington announced on Tuesday the “first batch” of sanctions aimed at blocking Russia’s access to Western funding and targeting “Russian elites” – including the head of Russian intelligence (FSB) Alexander Bortnikov – as well as the country’s financial institutions. “We are imposing broad sanctions on Russian sovereign debt,” Joe Biden said at a press conference from the White House. “If Russia goes further with this invasion, we are ready to move forward with sanctions,” he added.

Canada followed in the US’s lead in the following hours by banning all financial transactions by Canadians in the “independent” territories of Lugansk and Donetsk, and announced sanctions against members of Russia’s parliament who voted “for the illegal resolution to recognize” Justin Trudeau said.

Meanwhile, the prime minister said he had authorized “460 Canadian Armed Forces personnel” to be deployed to Latvia and to dispatch “an additional frigate and maritime patrol aircraft”. We do this to strengthen our commitment to NATO and to promote peace and security in Europe. »

Ottawa also summoned the Russian ambassador to [lui] They demanded an explanation of Russia’s ongoing aggression, violation of international law and disregard of Ukrainian sovereignty,” Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Jolie tweeted. Earlier today, the 27 EU member states “unanimously” agreed to a “sanction package” against Russia and warned that it would “do great harm.” “, added the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell. He spoke about the asset freeze and visa ban for the 351 Duma deputies who supported recognition of the independence of the breakaway regions.

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Josep Borrell noted that “the sanctions will also target 27 individuals and entities who undermine or threaten the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine,” noting that “actors in the defense sector that play a role in invading” the country, “those who launched a disinformation campaign against Ukraine” and “ Banks that finance Russian officials and other operations in these breakaway regions.”

The same story is from the G7, whose foreign ministers met on Tuesday to “discuss Russia’s blatant disregard for Ukrainian sovereignty,” according to beautiful. “We are united in our determination to support Ukraine and will impose sanctions on Russia for its actions,” she added.

But the most exciting measure remains the one announced by Berlin, which has frozen the massive Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, which is supposed to double Germany’s supply of Russian gas thanks to a 1,230-kilometer pipeline under the Baltic Sea with a capacity of 55 billion cubic meters of gas. every year. German Chancellor Olaf Schulz said the project, which has been a source of tension within the European Union and the United States for years, will be subject to a political “re-assessment” by the Foreign Ministry. Economy because of the “new geopolitical” continent.

Little hope for reconciliation

For Justin Trudeau, “Vladimir Putin has rigorously underestimated the international community’s response” in the face of an invasion of Ukraine that would “cost him dearly”. However, he said he hoped a diplomatic solution would continue to be found to prevent the crisis from sinking further.

US President Joe Biden shares hope of avoiding the “worst-case scenario” in Ukraine, “which would cause enormous suffering to millions of people.” We will judge Russia by its actions, not its words. Whatever Russia does next, we are ready to respond with unity, clarity and conviction. I hope the diplomatic channel remains open.”

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But this path, after several weeks of fruitless discussions between Moscow and the West, has become increasingly fragile. The head of US diplomacy, Anthony Blinken, said on Tuesday that he would not meet this week as planned with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, after Moscow recognized two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine. “Now that we have seen that the invasion has begun and that Russia has clearly refused any diplomacy, it would not make sense for us to meet at this stage,” he said during a press conference with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.

with AFP

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