Subscribe to Breaking News emails

You have successfully subscribed to the Breaking News email.

Subscribe today to be the first to to know about breaking news and special reports.

European Union Unveils 'First Set' of Crimea Sanctions

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

European Union foreign ministers agreed Monday to impose asset freezes and travel bans on 21 Russian and Ukrainian officials following Sunday's Crimea referendum.

Foreign ministers from the E.U.’s 28 member countries were in agreement following the three-hour meeting, with Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius confirming the outcome on Twitter.

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt added that the group would look to go beyond sanctions against individual officials and target the Russian government itself if the situation did not improve. His Czech counterpart, Lubomir Zaoralek, told Reuters that any decisions taken on Monday would be the "first set."

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

E.U. sanctions require unanimity among all 28 member states and there are several countries, including Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Spain and Portugal, that have reservations about moving too quickly, Reuters reported.

At the end of last week, the E.U. had drawn up a master list of 120-130 names for possible sanctions.

On Sunday, Crimean voters returned a 96.8 percent result in favor of leaving Ukraine and joining Russia.

The E.U. and United States said the referendum was illegal and conducted under threat of violence and intimidation from Moscow. The White House also announced sanctions on Monday.

Reuters contributed to this report.

- Alexander Smith

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
MORE FROM news