Additional sanctions on Russia might be necessary if Navalny is denied medical care - Rinkevics

  • 2021-04-19
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - If Russia's opposition leader Aleksey Navalny does not receive proper medical assistance, it might be necessary to prepare additional sanctions on Russia, Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics (New Unity) and other European Union (EU) foreign ministers said in a videoconference of the EU Foreign Affairs Council.

The Latvian foreign minister told LETA that during the videoconference the bloc's foreign ministers discussed Navalny's case, his health condition and the necessity for further political and diplomatic action and pressure on Russian authorities, so that Navalny was provided the necessary medical treatment. 

The EU ministers also heard the Czech interior minister who is also performing the duties of foreign minister. He informed his EU colleagues about the expulsion of Russian intelligence service's agents from the Czech Republic. 

"We heard the Czech side's considerations and evidence, which provides sufficiently strong grounds to believe that Russian agents are responsible for the 2014 blast at the Czech ammunition warehouse. We agreed to continue to coordinate our further steps, and of course, everyone expressed unequivocal support for the Czech partners," said Rinkevics. 

Rinkevics noted that the EU Foreign Affairs Council also discussed the situation in Georgia, Belarus, Myanmar and Ethiopia. Also, a discussion was held with the Ukrainian foreign minister who informed about developments along the Ukraine-Russia border, as well as Russia's military buildup and anti-Ukrainian rhetoric in Russian media. 

The EU ministers expressed firm political and diplomatic support for Ukraine and concrete mechanisms were discussed to support Ukraine and de-escalate the situation, the Latvian minister said.