New EU sanctions on Russia likely to include steel, luxury goods, jet fuel and more, sources say – NBC 6 South Florida

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  • The bloc remains divided on whether to extend these sanctions to energy imports – despite growing evidence of war crimes committed by Russian forces in Ukraine.
  • Imposing an immediate ban on Russian gas, oil or even coal has been the subject of much debate within the EU since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.
  • While some countries are in favor of banning Russian energy, other EU countries argue that they are too dependent on Russian energy and would harm their own economy more than that. of Russia.

LUXEMBOURG The European Union is working on a new package of sanctions against Russia this is likely to restrict the leasing of planes and the trade in jet fuel, steel products and luxury goods, two sources with knowledge of the discussions told CNBC.

However, the bloc remains divided on whether to extend these sanctions to energy imports – despite growing evidence of war crimes committed by Russian forces in Ukraine.

Ukraine’s chief prosecutor said 410 bodies had been found in towns recaptured from retreating Russian forces around kyiv as part of an investigation into possible war crimes. Over the weekend, various international media reported on the massacres of civilians in the town of Bucha, a Ukrainian city near the country’s capital, kyiv, which was under Russian occupation until recently.

The reports led to a series of calls within the European Union for the bloc to go further in punishing Moscow for its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. The bloc is currently working on a fifth set of sanctions against Russia, with the new set of measures expected to be approved later this week.

Two EU officials, who did not want to be named due to the sensitive nature of the talks, told CNBC that a proposal on the next sanctions package includes aircraft leasing, steel products, luxury and jet fuel. Both sources added that the package is still ongoing and could change as talks continue in the coming days and ahead of a crucial meeting of EU ambassadors on Wednesday.

One of the officials added that “obviously a big piece is missing”, referring to the lack of measures on the Russian energy sector.

Imposing an immediate ban on Russian gas, oil or even coal has been widely debated within the EU since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24. While some countries are in favor of banning Russian energy, other EU countries say they are too dependent. on Russian energy and they would hurt their own economy more than Russia’s.

President of France Emmanuel Macron said on Monday that the EU should agree to restrict Russian oil and coal following reported atrocities in Bucha. Poland, for example, announced last month that it would stop imports of Russian coal.

However, there is a very active group of EU countries that still oppose the approval of energy sanctions.

“We want to be, [in the] shortly, less dependent on Russian energy imports to the European Union and Germany will support new sanctions against Russia,” German Finance Minister Christian Lindner said in Luxembourg on Monday.

“We need to put more pressure on Putin and we need to isolate Russia. We need to cut off all economic relations with Russia, but at the moment it is not possible to cut off the gas supply,” he said. he adds.

Asked if for now, as Macron suggested, the EU should go ahead with oil and gas sanctions, Lindner replied: “No speculation on my part. ”

His Austrian counterpart also opposed the Russian gas ban.

“Austria is not in favor of more gas sanctions. We are very dependent on Russian gas and I think that any sanctions that hit us more than the Russians would not be good for us. That’s why we We’re against oil and gas sanctions,” Magnus Brunner, Austria’s federal finance minister, told CNBC.

The European Statistical Office estimates that Austria imported almost 59% of its natural gas from Russia in 2020. Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Latvia and Hungary imported an even higher share of natural gas from Russia the same year, according to Eurostat.

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