Tag Archive for EU

Fragile Europe Weakens U.S. Push for Russia Sanctions

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Sangwon Yoon – April 14, 2014) The U.S. readiness to impose new economic sanctions on Russia over Ukraine is offset by the European Union’s reluctance to introduce stronger measures that could threaten its already fragile economic recovery. While the Obama administration said yesterday that it’s prepared to ramp up sanctions, possibly

Interfax: Western evaluations of events in eastern, southern Ukraine reflect double standards – Chizhov

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BRUSSELS. April 10 (Interfax) – Russia’s permanent envoy to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov believes the evaluations given by the West to the events taking place in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine clearly indicate double standards in the approach to the crisis in Ukraine. “We see what is going on in the eastern

Russia Beyond the Headlines: Why giving up Russian gas is not an option for the EU

Russian Gas Facility file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Tatyana Zykova, special to RBTH - April 10, 2014) Despite talk in Europe of reducing dependence on Russian fuel and promises of help from the U.S., for the foreseeable future Russia remains the only country that can supply the EU with an increasing supply of cheap gas. The European

RIA Novosti: Opinion: EU, US Would Not Be Patient With Ukraine on Gas Issue

Russian Gas Facility file photo

MOSCOW, April 11 (RIA Novosti) – US and EU energy companies would not tolerate the delays in payment by Ukraine that Russia has faced, an economist at the London Vanguard investment firm told the Voice of Russia radio station Friday. “Historically, since the end of the USSR, Ukraine has repeatedly failed to pay for its

Culture Ministry Affirms ‘Russia is not Europe’

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – D. Garrison Golubock – April 8, 2014) A state commission working on a much-discussed report titled “Foundations of State Cultural Politics” will release their findings in two weeks, presidential advisor Vladimir Tolstoi announced last week, adding that the basic formula of the report could be summarized as “Russia is not

Over half of Ukrainians aspire to sign EU-Ukraine Association Agreement – poll

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KYIV. April 8 (Interfax) – Most Ukrainian citizens would like the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, including establishing a free trade zone, to be signed as quickly as possible but stances as to when this should be done differ. According to the poll held by the Rating sociological group, the results of which Interfax obtained on Tuesday,

BNE: If Ukraine unravels, the EU will be lumped with the poor western half

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – April 7, 2014) With pro-Russian protests in eastern Ukraine turning violent and fears growing of a Russian incursion on the pretext of “protecting” ethnic Russian civilians, attention is now turning to what the economy of this country would look like were those regions to split. The answer: not good.

Ukraine Says Russian Gas Transit to Europe Under Threat

Russian Gas Facility file photo

BRUSSELS, April 8 (RIA Novosti) – Russia’s set price on gas for Ukraine is unfairly high and is creating a threat of transiting Russian gas to Europe, Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan said Tuesday. “In this situation, the threat of cutting gas deliveries to Ukraine arises, as well as the threat of cutting transit gas

Russia Ready for Ukraine Talks with US, EU – Lavrov

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MOSCOW, April 8 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow is prepared to consider multilateral negotiations on the situation in Ukraine involving the US and EU, but a date has not yet been agreed on for the talks, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Tuesday. US Secretary of State John Kerry proposed holding talks on the crisis-hit country

Gas Replaces Weapons in New Russia-West Standoff

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – April 8, 2014) As the worst standoff since the Cold War emerges, energy and economic diplomacy are the tools the West applies to contain Russia, expecting them to be more effective than military confrontation. Business executives and energy industry analysts, however, were doubtful that these tools had

Crimea-Induced Brain Drain Will Hurt Russia More than Sanctions, Gontmakher Says

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, April 7, 2014) The domestic consequences of Moscow’s Crimean policy combined with Russia’s weakening economic prospects will drive ever more young Russians to seek work and possibly permanent residence abroad, an “exodus” that will hurt the country far more than any of the sanctions announced so far,

German Companies Remain Supportive of South Stream Gas Pipe

Gas Flame file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – April 7, 2014) While Russia’s standoff with the West over Ukraine may have caused Italian energy group Eni to distance itself from the huge South Stream gas pipeline project linking Russia to Central Europe, partners from Germany, which is highly dependent on Russian gas, have stayed faithful.

RIA Novosti: EU Could Lose 1 Trillion Euros From Further Sanctions Against Moscow – Russian Official

Kremlin and Moscow Environs Aerial View

MOSCOW, April 7 (RIA Novosti) – EU financial losses if broad economic sanctions are imposed against Russia could reach a trillion euros, according to Sergei Glazyev, an adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin. “It’s an open question who would sustain greater losses from the sanctions,” Glazyev told the Russian RT TV channel in an interview

RIA Novosti: Europe Lacks Realistic Alternative to Russian Energy Supplies – Analyst

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MOSCOW, April 4 (RIA Novosti) – Russia’s natural gas supplies to the European Union have no practical alternative, a senior energy analyst at the Colorado-based IHS company said Thusday. “The EU’s reliance on Russia to meet approximately 30 percent of its total gas demand means that there is no realistic alternative to European dependence on

Interfax: Europe can’t easily turn back on Russian energy resources – minister

Russian Gas Facility file photo

MOSCOW. April 4 (Interfax) – It would be difficult for Europe to give up Russian energy resources, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in an interview with TV channel Rossiya 24. He recalled that statements have been made about reducing the dependence on Russia in future. “And such work is being done in the European Union,

RIA Novosti: EU Not Ready to Offer Membership for Ukraine – Russian Ambassador

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BRUSSELS, April 2 (RIA Novosti) – The EU is not ready for border enlargement, and is unlikely to offer membership for Ukraine, the Russian ambassador to the EU said Wednesday. “As far as I can see, the EU is determined not to admit Ukraine to the union. The association agreement doesn’t guarantee membership in the

RIA Novosti: West and Russia Should Share Interest in Ukrainian Stability

Ukraine Map and Flag

BERLIN, April 2 (RIA Novosti) – Russia and Ukraine should be brought to a single negotiating table and Ukraine’s political stability should be in the interest of Russia, the EU and NATO member states, expert Cathryn Cluvier of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs said in response to comments by the German Foreign

RIA Novosti: EU Should Avoid Economic Sanctions Against Russia – Senior EU Official

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BRUSSELS, April 1 (RIA Novosti) – The European Union should refrain from introducing broad economic sanctions against Russia if the situation around Ukraine does not deteriorate, European Commission Vice President Olli Rehn said Tuesday. “No sensible European would want to see economic sanctions or any other escalation to the crisis. And in case Russia will

Interfax: U.S. to continue search for Ukraine resolution with UN, EU, OSCE, Russia – diplomat

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ASTANA. Apr 1 (Interfax) – The only way to resolve the Ukrainian crisis lies through diplomacy and defusing of military tensions in the region, United States Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Desai Biswal said. Today the world is watching the events in Ukraine with great concern. The U.S. and

Interfax: Russia’s, West’s approaches toward settling Ukraine crisis converging – Lavrov

File Photo of John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov at Separte Podiums, Kerry with a Visible Earpiece; Adapted from Photo at state.gov

MOSCOW. March 29 (Interfax) – Interaction between Moscow, Western countries and Kyiv to settle the crisis in Ukraine is becoming more tangible, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “Anyway, we are bringing our approaches closer together. My last meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in The Hague and my contacts with Germany, France

RIA Novosti: European Union Says Not Ready to Embrace Ukraine

Ukraine Map and Flag

BRUSSELS, March 27 (RIA Novosti) – The European Union is not ready to offer its membership to Ukraine, although such a posibility may arise in the future, President of the European Commission Jose Barroso said Thursday. Barroso said the membership had not been offered because the EU member-states were not ready “to integrate at this

The Hague Declaration

File Photo of G7 Leaders and other Officials Around Round Table at the Hague, with Flags

(The White House – Office of the Press Secretary – For Immediate Release – March 24, 2014) 1. We, the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission met in The Hague to reaffirm our support for

From Estonia to Azerbaijan: American Strategy After Ukraine

File Photo of Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama Seated Before Russian and U.S. Flags

(Stratfor.com – Geopolitical Weekly – George Friedman – Tuesday, March 25, 2014 – 03:08) As I discussed last week, the fundamental problem that Ukraine poses for Russia, beyond a long-term geographical threat, is a crisis in internal legitimacy. Russian President Vladimir Putin has spent his time in power rebuilding the authority of the Russian state within

VIDEO: What’s Next for Ukraine? – The Charlie Rose Show, with Sestanovich, Cohen and Bremmer

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

The Charlie Rose Show covers unfolding events in the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, including occupied Crimea. Rose talks with Stephen Sestanovich, Stephen Cohen and Ian Bremmer.  

Russia-Ukraine: Return of the Prometheans

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Chris Weafer, Macro Advisors – March 24, 2014) “Taking a new step, uttering a new word, is what people fear the most” Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment The threat is more important than existing sanctions. The sanctions announced so far do not directly cause any material disruption to the

Russians Must Oust Putin Rather than Suffer for His Imperial Ambitions, Felshtinsky Says

Vladimir Putin file photo

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, March 24, 2014) Russians must recognize that Vladimir Putin is “an aggressor and instigator of war,” that he is making them into “victims and participants in state crimes,” that he will eventually lose to the democratic world, and that he, they and their country will suffer and

Ukraine-EU Pact Signals Step Towards NATO – Russian Ministry Source

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MOSCOW, March 24 (RIA Novosti) – The signing of a political pact between Ukraine and the European Union is a hasty step which points to the prospect of closer military ties between Kiev and NATO, a Russian foreign ministry source said Monday. “The political provisions of the association deal pave the way for further entrenchment

Interim Ukraine government in the same hole as Yanukovych

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – KYIV BLOG – Ben Aris in Moscow – March 24, 2014) The interim Ukrainian government signed off on the long-mooted Association Agreement with the EU at the weekend, setting the impasse with Russia in stone. However, the “Maidan” government baulked at signi ng the economic part of the deal.

Interfax: Lavrov dubs signing of EU-Ukraine deal political provisions geopolitical game

Maidan Square file photo

MOSCOW. March 21 (Interfax) – The purpose of signing the political provisions for the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement is not to take care of the interests of the Ukrainian people. This is an attempt to score in a geopolitical game, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “In my opinion, this step was not dictated by the

Merkel Warns on Rush to Russia Sanctions, Reflecting EU Split

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – James G. Neuger, Ian Wishart and Jonathan Stearns – March 20, 2014) German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the European Union won’t rush to impose economic sanctions on Russia for the annexation of Crimea, reflecting concerns that trade curbs would damage Europe’s tentative recovery. Germany, which is Russia’s biggest EU trading partner,

Interfax: Sergei Lavrov says Western sanctions on Russia are not lawful

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW. March 20 (Interfax) – The sanctions imposed on Russia by the European Union and the United States do not have international legal grounds, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. “Unilateral sanctions have never done any good. They are not legal. And they do not have international legal grounds,” Lavrov said at a State Duma

Right Sector against Ukraine’s accession to the EU

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – March 20, 2014) The Right Sector movement has called for Ukraine’s non-aligned status, its leader, Dmytro Yarosh, has said. “The Right Sector has not supported and does not support Ukraine’s accession to the EU. We believe that Ukraine should be a subject, rather than an object of geopolitics. We

Mistakes in some arguments given for Russia’s action [re: Ukraine]

Maidan Square file photo

Subject:  Mistakes in some arguments given for Russia’s action Date:     Fri, 14 Mar 2014 From:   Ira Straus IRASTRAUS@aol.com Mistakes in some arguments given for Russia’s action By Ira Straus U.S. Coordinator Committee on Eastern Europe and Russia in NATO A. The imagined NATO threat It is argued that the EU association agreement was a step

Kudrin on sanctions: Western banks already closing credit lines to Russian corporate sector

Alexei Kudrin file photo

ST. PETERSBURG. March 13 (Interfax) – Former Russian finance minister Alexei Kudrin is apprehensive about possible Western sanctions against Russia and said limitations in the banking sector have already begun. “I can say quite definitely: credit line limits for Russia are being closed,” said Kudrin, who is currently a member of the Presidential Economic Council.

Statement of G-7 Leaders on Ukraine

File Photo of G8 Heads of State Outdoors in 2013

(The White House – Office of the Press Secretary – For Immediate Release – March 12, 2014) We, the leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, the President of the European Council and the President of the European Commission, call on the Russian Federation to cease all efforts to

Obama Warns Putin Annexing Ukraine Will Be Costly for Russia

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Business News Europe – bne.eu – Tim Ash, Standard Bank – March 13, 2014) Pretty good summary herein of the main developments in Ukraine: [http://russialist.org/germanyeuukraine-fine-grained-response-likely-to-crimean-referendum/] A couple of things I would add: First the Kerry-Lavrov meeting today is important, as Kerry seemed to be playing hard to get earlier in the week, perhaps letting his

GERMANY/EU/UKRAINE: Fine-grained response likely to Crimean referendum

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Business News Europe – bne.eu – Teneo Intelligence – March 13, 2014) In response to the Crimean referendum, the EU will likely move to level two of its sanctions menu. Asset freezes and travel bans will be applied only gradually, amid German unwillingness to escalate to broader economic measures. No quick fix to the crisis

Russia Preparing Response to U.S. and EU Sanctions

File Photo of Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama Seated Before Russian and U.S. Flags

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Natalya Krainova – March 6, 2014) The Federation Council is drawing up a bill that would allow the government to confiscate the property of U.S. and European companies in the event of Western sanctions, though political analysts dismiss both actions as intimidating rhetoric unlikely turn into action. Further decreasing the

EU sanctions against Russia unlikely absent significant escalation

Russian Naval Vessel in Ukrainian Port

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Teneo Intelligence – March 3, 2014) Despite the ratcheting-up of rhetoric by European countries regarding the events in Ukraine, it remains unlikely for now that the European Union (EU) will impose sanctions on Russia. Not only would a high degree of consensus among EU member states be required in

UKRAINE ONLINE POLL: What would be Ukraine’s best course to follow?

Maidan Square file photo

[poll originally posted in late 2013] We would like to hear your opinion about unfolding events in Ukraine and welcome your participation in the following poll. Visitors can vote for up to three choices, and generally can vote once each day.  There also as an option to “fill in the blank.” After you have made

NEWSLINK: Is Putin pushing for a crackdown in Ukraine? The Kremlin has said that it will not intervene in Ukraine, but the escalating violence in Kiev may force their hand

Maidan Square file photo

["Is Putin pushing for a crackdown in Ukraine? The Kremlin has said that it will not intervene in Ukraine, but the escalating violence in Kiev may force their hand." - Christian Science Monitor - Fred Weir, Correspondent - Moscow - February 19, 2014 - csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2014/0219/Is-Putin-pushing-for-a-crackdown-in-Ukraine] The Christian Science Monitor and Fred Weir examine whether Russia

Gazprom Captures Largest-Ever Share of European Gas Market

File Photo of Blue Flame from Natural Gas

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 19, 2014) State-owned gas giant Gazprom captured its largest-ever share of the European and Turkish gas market last year, supplying 30 percent of the continent’s needs, as compared to 26 percent in 2012. The Russian export monopoly sent 162.7 billion cubic meters of gas westward in 2013, and beat

NEWSLINK: Japan-Russia Ties: An Opportunity for the U.S.

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["Japan-Russia Ties: An Opportunity for the U.S." - Moscow Times - themoscowtimes.com - Jeffrey Mankoff - February 18, 2014 - themoscowtimes.com/opinion/article/japan-russia-ties-an-opportunity-for-the-us/494786.html] A Moscow Times commentary by Jeffrey Mankoff, of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, suggests that Russian relations with the United States and the European Union are at an impasse, but that Russian

NEWSLINK: Russia accuses EU of seeking Ukraine “sphere of influence”

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["Russia accuses EU of seeking Ukraine 'sphere of influence'" - Reuters - Gabriela Baczynska, Alexandra Hudson - February 14, 2014 - http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/14/us-ukraine-russia-eu-idUSBREA1D0PT20140214] Reuters covers tensions between Russia and the EU over Ukraine, including Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov bemoaning the prospect of an EU sphere of influence on Russia’s borders: Russia accused the European Union

Merkel to Host Ukraine Opposition as New Rally Planned

Angela Merkel file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Daryna Krasnolutska – February 14, 2014) German Chancellor Angela Merkel will host Ukrainian opposition leaders next week as protesters try to raise pressure on the government to step down and Russia accuses the U.S. and European Union of meddling in its backyard. Merkel will meet opposition leaders Arseniy Yatsenyuk and Vitali

Ukrainian Opposition Suffers Setback amid Diplomatic Flap and Rising Concerns

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(New Eastern Outlook – journal-neo.org – Martin Harris – February 13, 2014) Martin Harris, a freelance journalist and analyst based in the Eurasia region, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”. The recently leaked diplomatic exchange between United States Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasia Affairs Victoria Nuland and US Ambassador to

RIA Novosti: Russia Expects Ukraine to Integrate with Eurasian Union

Maidan Square file photo

MOSCOW, February 13 (RIA Novosti) – Russia expects Ukraine to return to a process of integration with a Moscow-driven economics union stretching from Europe to the Pacific Ocean, a senior Kremlin official said Thursday. “We are counting on Ukraine’s return to the integration process,” presidential advisor Sergei Glazyev told an economic conference in Moscow. The

Russian senator slams EU over “double standards” on Ukraine

Mikhail Margelov file photo

(Interfax – Moscow, February 11, 2014) The head of the Russian Federation Council’s International Affairs Committee, Mikhail Margelov, has accused the European Union of employing double standards. Margelov told Interfax that during his work in PACE he and his colleagues from the Russian delegation acquired strong immunity to double standards in assessments of the same

New Dimensions of U.S. Foreign Policy Toward Russia

Maidan Square file photo

(Stratfor.com – George Friedman – February 11, 2014) The struggle for some of the most strategic territory in the world took an interesting twist this week. Last week we discussed what appeared to be a significant shift in German national strategy in which Berlin seemed to declare a new doctrine of increased assertiveness in the

Endgame Nears In EU’s Antitrust Showdown With Gazprom

File Photo of Blue Flame from Natural Gas

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Charles Recknagel – February 11, 2014) The Russian natural-gas giant Gazprom has long had its way in Europe, dominating the continent’s energy market and, according to critics, flaunting its rules with impunity. But that all might be about to change. A long-standing showdown between Gazprom and the European Union over alleged

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