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 EU should maintain Russia sanctions until Minsk 2 properly fulfilled, - Obama

U.S. President Barack Obama says the European Union sanctions against the Russian Federation must stay in force for as long as Moscow fails to observe its commitments under the Minsk agreements.

He said at a joint press conference with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in Washington, D.C., Censor.NET reports.

Obama and Renzi discussed their joint concern about the situation in Ukraine and the importance of extending sanctions, including those imposed by the EU, until Russia and Ukraine fulfill their commitments under the Minsk agreements.

According to the president, the U.S. is determined to take every diplomatic effort within the Normandy format in order to achieve this goal.

Read more: Sanctions only leverage against Russia, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linkevičius says

On Oct. 18, during his visit to Norway, Ukrainian President Poroshenko held a telephone conversation with French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The parties agreed to meet in the Normandy format on Oct. 19 in Berlin.

Russian president's press secretary Dmitry Peskov has confirmed Putin is going to attend the upcoming Normandy Four meeting in order to "synchronize watches."

However, according to Peskov, it is premature to talk about some definite agreements.

Earlier, the U.S. and Britain were reported to be weighing new sanctions against the Assad regime and Russia for their atrocities in Syrian Aleppo.

Read more: Poroshenko enacts NSDC decision on special personal sanctions against Russia

As reported, the EU, U.S. and other countries introduced sanctions against the Russian Federation in response to its occupation of Crimea and aggression in the east of Ukraine, which have been repeatedly extended since then. Talks about a visa-free regime and new cooperation agreement were put on hold. Certain Russian officials were banned from the EU with their assets having been frozen. The sanction list includes 151 person and 37 companies. Sectoral sanctions have affected 20 Russian financial, oil and defense agencies.

In August 2014, Russia introduced a package of retaliatory measures against the EU, U.S., Australia, Canada and Norway. The so-called "countersanctions" banned the import of fruit, vegetables, dairy and meat products from these countries for a period of one year.
Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n411119