Germany and France have proposed new EU sanctions against Russia over the poisoning of the Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, Le Monde reports. It notes that the sanction list includes nine employees of the presidential administration and law enforcement agencies. After the sanctions are adopted, these people will be banned from entering Europe and their assets in the EU will be frozen.
Besides, the EU may impose sanctions against the State Research Institute of Organic Chemistry and Technology, which is believed to have been developing Novichok in the Soviet Union.
However, Le Monde wrote that this version of the sanctions list is not final.
Russia is ready to reply to sanctions from Germany and France and sees no evidence that Navalny was indeed poisoned. The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs press-secretary Maria Zakharova stated this on the TV channel “Rain.”
“Sanctions, restrictive measures, stop-lists always lead in international relations to one thing, namely to retaliation measures,” she said.
Zakharova claims that the West uses the Navalny poisoning situation allegedly as a trigger for further imposition of anti-Russian sanctions instead of investigating the case.
To recap, Navalny collapsed onboard a flight from Siberia to Moscow on 20 August. The aircraft had to land in Omsk. According to the main version, someone wanted Navalny to be poisoned and added a toxic substance in his tea. According to the poisoners’ plan, the victim was to die immediately on the plane. The oppositionist survived only due to the quick reaction of the pilot and atropine, injected by doctors.
The conclusions about Navalny’s poisoning with the most dangerous type of Russian poison “Novichok” were confirmed by three independent laboratories in Germany, France and Sweden.
The UK and the Netherlands have already backed the sanctions against Russia for the poisoning of Alexey Navalny.