Despite Russia’s threats, Lithuania expands restrictions on goods transit to Kaliningrad
A ban on the import of cement, alcohol, and several other goods of Russian origin into the territory of the European Union as part of the fourth package of EU sanctions came into force, reported Delfi. These restrictions also affect transit of goods to the Russian Kaliningrad region.
The representative of the Lithuanian customs noted that imports into the EU of cement, alcohol, lumber, industrial alcohol-based chemicals, and several other Russian-made products are not allowed as part of the sanctions. The restriction will also affect transit to the Russian Kaliningrad region, although earlier it was believed that exceptions might be introduced to the EU sanctions concerning Kaliningrad.
The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry stressed that land transit between the Kaliningrad region and other parts of the Russian Federation has not been stopped or blocked. The restrictions apply only to the goods that fall under sanctions.
On June 18, Lithuania partially blocked transit of Russian goods to the Kaliningrad region. On June 21, the list of products that fall under restrictions was extended.
Deputy head of the Russian Federation Council Committee on International Affairs Vladimir Dzhabarov said that Lithuania's blockade of the Kaliningrad region could lead to an armed conflict with Russia.
On July 8, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Lithuania was delaying lifting the transit restrictions and Russia would not "wait forever".