During a joint program by Krym.Realii and the TV channel UA:Pershyi titled “Crimea: 5 years of opposing the Russian occupation”, European Parliament Member Rebecca Harms said that she believes new personal sanctions should be imposed on Russia for its aggression in annexed Crimea.
“I think that we need the sanctions, and we must not lift them until we achieve a better situation in Crimea and in the Donbas. What we are currently seeing gives cause to think about new sanctions. I side with those who think that the Russians who are involved in the torturing of prisoners or the escalation of the conflict in the Sea of Azov must be placed under personal sanctions such as the Magnitsky List. They must not travel to the US or the EU, they must not have accounts in the EU, their children must not have the opportunity to study in European universities,” Rebecca Harms commented.
EU ambassadors recently agreed to impose additional sanctions on certain Russian citizens. Eight Russians who are believed to have been involved in the capture of Ukrainian sailors off the coast of Crimea in November 2018 will soon have their accounts in the EU frozen and be banned from entering the zone.
The EU, together with the US and other partners, has gradually introduced sanctions against Russia for the annexation of Crimea and Moscow’s role in the armed conflict in the Donbas.
On Tuesday 26 February, Ukraine observed the “Day of opposing the Russian occupation of Crimea”. On the same day in 2014, a rally was held outside the Crimean parliament building in support of the territorial integrity of Ukraine. The protesters were opposed by pro-Russian activists, including members of the Russian Unity party.
International organizations have recognized the occupation and annexation of Crimea as illegal and condemned Russia’s actions. Western countries have consequently imposed a number of economic sanctions on Russia. Moscow denies that it is occupying the peninsula, claiming that it is a “restoration of historical justice”. Ukrainian parliament officially declared 20 February 2014 as the start of Russia’s temporary occupation of Crimea and Sevastopol.