New sanctions are being prepared by Western countries against Russia. After last week announcement of a proposed peace plan for the Ukranian crisis by president Poroshenko, European Union (EU) members are calling for Russia to cooperate, threatening with further sanctions if the Kremlin refuses to actively engage. The threat comes after president Vladimir Putin has called for both sides in the Ukrainian conflict to lay down their arms.
William Hague, UK foreign minister, announced that they would be waiting until the end of the week, when the truce in Ukraine ends, to see if the Russian response complies with the peace plan. As Hague explained, “Putin should be in no doubt that in the EU, we are ready to take those measures”.
Currently, the United States, the EU and Canada have imposed sanctions to Russian companies, which have been identified to be owned by businessmen close to the government. Meanwhile, Russia is preparing to take legal actions against these countries in response.
The Kremlin has asked for the World Trade Organization (WTO) to intervene and stop the sanctions.
Currently the petition is being reviewed. According to Swiss special Ambassador Luzius Wasescha, as long as sanctions on Russia remain political, the WTO system won't be able to resolve the issue, but if Russia can show that sanctions touch the principle of free trade, then Russia might win the claim.