Ukraine welcomes new EU sanctions against Russia

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KIEV, March 6 (Xinhua) — Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on Wednesday welcomed an EU decision to launch a new package of sanctions against Russia over the Kerch Strait incident.

“I am grateful for the support of my initiative and unwavering solidarity and unity with the Ukrainian people,” Poroshenko wrote on Facebook.

Earlier in the day, Interfax-Ukraine news agency reported that the Committee of the Permanent Representatives (Coreper) of the European Union (EU), the main preparatory body of the Council of the EU, had approved a list of eight people who are believed to be involved in the incident in the Kerch Strait last November.

On Nov. 25, 2018, three Ukrainian ships and more than 20 sailors attempting to sail through the Kerch Strait from the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov were seized by Russian forces for allegedly violating the Russian border.

Moscow called the incident a “political provocation” staged by Ukraine, while Kiev accused Russia of “aggressive actions” and asked for EU assistance in releasing the captured sailors.

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