Lithuania on new Russia sanctions: it's only the beginning

  • 2022-02-23
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte says she has no doubt the latest sanctions foreign countries and the EU announced for Russia on Tuesday are only the first swift decision in response to Moscow's action and, clearly, "further discussions" on the issue will follow.

"It seems that the key message was, and that message was sent by all the countries and international organizations that made decisions, including the European Union, the UK prime minister, and also President Biden, and the European External Action Service's high representatives said it very clearly that it's only the beginning," the prime minister told a press conference at the parliament on Wednesday.

"I view it as the first step, and other steps will depend on Russia's further steps," Simonyte added.

On Tuesday, the EU agreed on a new sanction package for Russia, covering around 400 natural persons, as well as businesses and banks operating in Donetsk and Luhansk. New sanctions for Russia were also imposed by the United States, the UK and other countries.

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis says the sanction package EU foreign ministers agreed is practically identical to the one imposed by the US, the UK and Canada.

Asked whether, in his opinion, the sanction package was sufficient, the prime minister said that "obviously, further discussion on sanctions will take place".

"It’s never too late for the aggressor to change his mind, and we can have hope and expectation n that, but, clearly, those were the first swift moves taken immediately after Russia violated a number of international commitment by "legalizing" the formations Russia itself has been in control of for some time and that are illegally operating in Ukraine's territory," Simonyte said.

She also pointed out the differences in procedures of imposing sanctions as "for the UK or the US, having their national sanction regimes, it's easier to make swift decisions and the US president or other institutions have great powers".