In Hiroshima, Japan, the summit of the leaders of the “Big Seven” has opened, which will be held for two days. Earlier, the media reported on the likely increase in sanctions pressure on Russia from G-7 states, including a complete ban on exports, except for several groups of humanitarian goods. In the statement, the leaders of the seven countries stressed that peace in Ukraine is possible only after the withdrawal of Russian armed forces from its territory without preconditions.
What was agreed at the meeting
The G7 states demand that Russia immediately cease hostilities against Ukraine, withdraw its troops and refrain from deploying nuclear weapons in Belarus.
“We emphasize that a just peace is impossible without the complete and unconditional withdrawal of Russian troops and military equipment, and this should be included in any call for peace,” underline leaders of seven countries in a joint statement following the Hiroshima summit in Japan.
The G-7 leaders have also threatened to toughen the sanctions regime so that Russia has no loopholes to circumvent them. “We will deprive Russia of G7 technology, industrial equipment and services that support its war machine. We will continue to protect agricultural, medical and humanitarian goods from our restrictive measures and do our utmost to avoid possible side effects on third countries,” the statement read.
The Russian Foreign Ministry has stated that peace with Ukraine is only possible if a number of conditions are met, including:
the cessation of hostilities by Ukrainian armed groups and the supply of arms by Western countries; the withdrawal of foreign mercenaries from the territory of the state; ensuring Ukraine’s neutral and non-bloc status; rejection of Ukraine’s membership in NATO and the EU; confirmation of Ukraine’s non-nuclear status; recognition by Kiev and the international community of “new territorial realities.
Additionally, on May 19, the US, UK and EU imposed new sanctions against organizations and individuals in the energy sector. The United States has passed new export restrictions against Russia – there are more than 1,200 items on the list, including building materials, paints and vehicles.
Earlier, the Financial Times, citing sources among European officials, wrote that the EU may have hit the ceiling on sanctions against Russia after the introduction of ten packages of restrictions in connection with military operations in Ukraine.
What Russia’s Opponents Didn’t Agree On
No further steps at the G-7 level to tighten sanctions or military measures against Moscow have yet been taken, although ahead of the summit media reported on possible additional restrictions, including a near-total ban on exports of products to Russia.
As the Financial Times wrote, the United States has proposed replacing the current regime of sectoral sanctions against Russia with a complete ban on exports, excluding medicines, agricultural products and certain other vital goods, but the EU and Japan did not support the plan.
The G7 also failed to reach a consensus on imposing sanctions on Russian diamonds, writing Policy.
The G7 brings together the advanced democracies of Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States. Russia was excluded from the format in 2014 due to a dispute with Ukraine.
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