G7 leaders ready to step up anti-Russian sanctions

G7 leaders ready to step up anti-Russian sanctions

The G7 leaders have stated their intention to step up sanctions against Russians should its actions so require, according to the final communique adopted on Saturday after the end of the two-day G7 summit in La Malbaie, Canada, TASS reported.

"We also stand ready to take further restrictive measures in order to increase costs on Russia," said the leaders of the UK, Germany, Italy, Canada, the US, France and Japan.

The G7 leaders said that the abolishment of sanctions against Russia depends on Moscow’s implementation of the Minsk accords. "We recall that the continuation of sanctions is clearly linked to Russia’s failure to demonstrate complete implementation of its commitments in the Minsk Agreements and respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and we fully support the efforts within the Normandy Format and of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe for a solution to the conflict in Eastern Ukraine." Moscow repeatedly said in response that the warring sides in eastern Ukraine should be called on to observe the agreements, not Russia.

"We reiterate our condemnation of the illegal annexation of Crimea and reaffirm our enduring support for Ukrainian sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders," the declaration says. According to the declaration, the Group of Seven leaders are still determined to provide comprehensive help to Ukraine in carrying out reforms.

In addition, the G7 leaders demanded that Moscow should stop supporting Syria’s authorities. The communique contains the appeal "to cease its destabilizing behaviour, to undermine democratic systems and its support of the Syrian regime."

Still, the G7 leaders announced that they will further cooperate with Moscow in addressing international crises, but specified that it will be possible only if the G7’s interests are observed. "Notwithstanding, we will continue to engage with Russia on addressing regional crises and global challenges, where it is in our interests," the communique says.