European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s latest resolution calls for sanctions on many more Russian high-ranking officials and individuals. These people have been accused of being involved in war crimes.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has proposed a complete ban on imports of Russian oil and natural gas into the European Union (EU). Der Leyen proposed while announcing the sixth installment of sanctions on Russia after the start of Russia’s special military action on Ukraine. Addressing the European Parliament, he said the new sanctions are aimed at punishing Russia for aggressive actions against Ukraine.
The EU depends on Russia for nearly 40 percent of its gas needs. Gas prices across the EU region have risen sharply since the start of the Ukraine war. This has also had an impact on the inflation rate. In EU countries, it is feared that next winter, it is possible that families may not get the required amount of gas to heat their homes. Despite this, the President of the European Commission on Wednesday announced a phased program to end dependence on Russian gas.
Der Leyen said- ‘Under the new proposal, all types of Russian oil will be banned. These include oil, crude, and refined all coming out of the sea and coming from the pipeline. We will systematically end our dependence on Russian oil. We will eliminate this in a phased manner, giving our partners the opportunity to find safer alternative sources and ensure they have minimal dependence on imports from the world market. That’s why we will stop importing Russian crude oil for the next six months. The production of refined products will be stopped by the end of this year.
But analysts say Der Leyen’s plan is just a proposal for now. It will come into force only when all the 27 countries included in the EU ratify it. Differences have already emerged in the EU on the issue of reducing dependence on Russian oil and gas. Hungary has said that it will not compromise its interests on the issue of energy supply. Slovakia has also indicated that it will seek an exemption in the matter.
Under Der Leyen’s latest proposal, it has been said to impose sanctions on many more high-ranking officials and individuals of Russia. Der Leyen accused these men of being involved in war crimes. Apart from this, he also announced blocking the signals of all Russian-owned broadcasting institutions in the EU region. He also announced the decision to exclude Russia’s largest bank – Sber Bank from the international payment system SWIFT.
According to media reports, there is growing discontent among EU member states on the issue of stopping oil and gas imports. EU leaders have so far failed to find a credible alternative to Russian oil and gas. They do plan to buy liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the US, but it is clear that it will be available at a much higher price than Russian gas.