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European Commission announces more sanctions against Russia, including an oil price cap

Von-der-leyen-Coomision-Europea-sept22The European Commission proposed on Wednesday the eighth package of sanctions against Russia, which includes a cap on Russian oil, new import bans on Russian products and a ban on EU citizens from holding positions as senior executives in companies. public of the Eurasian country.

The new import bans on Russian goods, according to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, will deprive Moscow of an additional €7 billion ($6.7 billion) in revenue. In addition, new prohibitions on the export of key technology used for the army, such as aviation products, electronic components and specific chemical substances, are incorporated.

In announcing the sanctions, von der Leyen noted that “some developing countries still need some supplies of Russian oil, but at low prices,” and therefore the G7 countries agreed to introduce a price cap. of Russian crude.

“This is why the G7 has agreed in principle to introduce a cap on Russian oil prices for third countries. This cap will, on the one hand, help reduce Russia’s income and, on the other hand, keep global energy markets stable,” Von der Leyen said, adding that the current sanctions package lays “the legal foundation for this cap on oil prices”.

Members of the Group of Seven (G7), made up of the UK, US, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan, have already agreed to introduce caps on Russian oil prices on September 2.

The cap on the price of Russian oil is in line with the political agreement reached by the G7 leaders, proposing that the transport of Russian oil and its derivatives be only allowed globally if the products are sold below a certain amount.

The prohibition for EU citizens to be part of the boards of directors of companies is designed to avoid possible cases such as that of former German chancellor Gerhard Schröder, who worked for Gazprom.

“Russia must not benefit from European knowledge and its experts,” said von der Leyen.

The high representative of the EU for Foreign Policy and Security, Josep Borrell, revealed that the number of natural and legal persons subject to the bloc’s punitive measures will amount to about 1,300, and among them there are individuals and entities that contribute to that the “territorial integrity of Ukraine” is undermined.

The sanctions will target Russian individuals and authorities in Russian-controlled areas who organized referendums on joining Russia in two republics of Donbass and the Kherson and Zaporozhie regions.

In addition, Borrell proposes to appoint the top officials of the Russian Defense Ministry responsible for supporting the country’s army in Ukraine with weapons and equipment, as well as the declared mobilization of 300,000 reservists.

In the category of economic actors, people, not necessarily Russians, who participate in the circumvention of sanctions will be included, Borrell said.

The European Commission’s announcement comes after the leaders of Lugansk and the Kherson and Zaporozhie regions asked Vladimir Putin to join Russia after holding referendums on accession, which took place from September 23 to 27.

Moscow: Russian oil only for countries operating under market conditions
From the Kremlin they warned that Moscow will send its crude only to countries that “operate under market conditions”, and that supplies that do not go to nations that support price limits will go to “alternative destinations”.

The cap on the price of Russian oil is in line with the political agreement reached by the G7 leaders, proposing that the transport of Russian oil and its derivatives be only allowed globally if the products are sold below a certain amount.

EU countries will stop importing Russian oil by pipeline from December 5.

Leaders of Lugansk, Kherson and Zaporozhye ask Putin to join Russia
The leader of the Lugansk People’s Republic (PLR), Leonid Pásechnik, the head of the Regional Civil-Military Administration of the Kherson region, Vladimir Saldo, and the representative of the Zaporozhye region, Yevgueni Balitski, addressed this Wednesday to the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, with the request to incorporate the territories into Russia.

“Since the population of the republic approved the decision in the referendum, I ask you to consider the possibility of the Lugansk People’s Republic becoming part of Russia as a constituent entity of the Russian Federation,” said the LPR leader.

In his speech to Putin, Passechnik noted that the RPL is aware of its historical, cultural and spiritual ties with the people of Russia.

The senior official denounced that “for eight years, residents of the Lugansk People’s Republic have been subjected to brutal bombing and genocide by the kyiv regime.”

“In their impotent rage at their unsuccessful attempts to invade the territory of the Luhansk People’s Republic and their failures in open combat with the republic’s defenders, the neo-Nazis have only intensified their terror and bombardment of civilian infrastructure. and industrial, destroying schools, hospitals and nurseries,” he said.

According to Pásechnik, most of the world is “silent” about what is happening in Donbass.

“Not a single state or international organization has condemned kyiv’s actions in Donbass,” he continued, adding that only Russia “has provided and continues to provide extensive assistance to the population of Donbass.”

For his part, Saldo stressed that “the people of Kherson province have decided courageously and unequivocally that the only path they want to follow is that of union with Russia as an integral part of their multinational people.”

“Today, when freedom of thought, expression, conscience and religion is in danger of being eradicated in favor of centrally imposed values ​​that are often contrary not only to reason but also to nature itself, we, the people of Zaporozhie For the sake of our common goal of guaranteeing peace and security, the rule of human rights and freedoms, we want to become a single state with the Russian Federation”, says Balitski’s petition to the Russian president.

In the referendums, which took place from 8:00 a.m. (local time) on Friday, September 23, to 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27, the voters of the people’s republics of Donbass and the regions of Kherson and Zaporozhie voted for Please join Russia.

93.11% of voters in Zaporozhie and 87.05% in Kherson voted yes to being part of Russia. In the Lugansk and Donets republics, 98.42% and 99.23% of voters voted affirmatively.

The process of integrating new regions into the Russian Federation can take some time, as it requires the approval of the president and parliament.

However, last Friday the Kremlin spokesman, Dmitri Peskov, was convinced that the necessary steps will be taken “quickly enough”.

Russians withdraw from the Dakar 2023 due to the demand to condemn their country
The Russian team KAMAZ-Master will not participate in the next Dakar rally after announcing that it will not sign the documents that would force it to “denounce” its own country.

Thus, for the first time in 24 years, the famous annual competition will not have Russian representation.

In a statement published on the KAMAZ-Master website, the 19-time rally-winning team criticized the decision of the International Automobile Federation (FIA), which allows the Russians to participate neutrally, but on the condition to sign certain documents that include statements about the conflict in Ukraine.

“The participation of Russian athletes in the Dakar rally is conditioned by the need to sign the FIA ​​questionnaire denouncing the Russian special operation in Ukraine. In our opinion, the content of this document is of a political nature and violates the principles of equal conditions for athletes.

“We consider that it is impossible for us to sign those documents and participate in the competitions in those conditions,” the message reads.

The drivers indicate that their position “is clear: always be with the country, especially when it finds itself in a difficult situation.”

Last March, the FIA ​​required Russian and Belarusian drivers to sign a declaration of commitment to the principles of peace and political neutrality that includes a clause of solidarity with Ukraine.

The move was announced amid broader restrictions imposed on Russian sport by various sports federations, which followed a stern rebuke of Russia by the International Olympic Committee.

Earlier this month, Russian drivers Sergei Karyakin and Anastasia Nifontova condemned the requirement, announcing that they will not take part in the 45th edition of the Dakar to be held in Saudi Arabia between December 31, 2022 and January 15, 2023.

Meanwhile, co-driver Konstantin Zhiltsov chose an alternative option by changing his sporting nationality and will participate in the Dakar under the Israeli flag, evading the restrictions.

(With information from EFE, AFP and RT in Spanish)

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