The Foreign Minister of the European Union (EU) is discussing new sanctions against Russia following the arrest of Alexei Navalny, a rival in Brussels on Monday, similar to the rival Magnetsky Act.
The Magnitsky Act of the United States punishes human rights violations and, if such approval applies in the European Union, it will be the first in the community.
EU MNE at video conference with Blinken
On Monday, European ministers spoke to the new US Secretary of State Antony Blinken via videoconferencing.
“This will be the first time that we will use the new sanctions regime involving human rights violations”, acknowledged European sources cited by international agencies.
Although the sanctions are not expected to be approved on Monday, ministers are expected to reach political consensus on the need to implement them.
The discussion came after a visit to Moscow by Josep Burrell, the High Representative for the European Union’s Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, which coincided with the expulsion of three European diplomats.
After the visit, Burrell concludes that Russia is moving away from European values and refuses to cooperate with Brussels, while ‘twenty-seven’ demands Navalny’s release.
“In this case, it is fascinating and even symbolic that this regime of sanctions can be used,” said other diplomatic sources, who said that “the situation in Russia has deteriorated” to the “situation” for which Feedback is required in relation “”.
These repressive measures include banning accepted individuals from entering European territory, as well as freezing their assets in the European Union.
The minister will discuss who should be on this ban list.
Several sources agree with the need to include those directly responsible for Navalny’s detention to ensure that the EU Court of Justice cannot deem the sanctions illegal due to lack of legal basis.
For this reason, they are not in favor of the Russian government’s inclusion of close oligarchs, as the Kremlin’s opponent himself asked in an intervention in the European Parliament in November.
There are already restrictions due to Crimea
Currently, the European Union maintains sanctions against Russia due to the war in Crimea and eastern Ukraine and also that Navalny faced the chemical agent Novichok due to toxicity, so these are the third that are on the table, a debate. in. Which will continue at the March summit with the heads of the European Union and the government.
The European foreign minister will also seek retaliation for not receiving Moscow’s requests for the release of rival Alexey Navalny and for striking the envoy Joseph Borel during his visit to the Russian capital in early February.
The US Secretary of State’s involvement by videoconference is considered an important “signal” by European ministers and President Joey Biden’s wish to reestablish a connection to Europe that former President Donald Trump considered “enemies” , Emphasized many European diplomats.
The head of Lithuania’s diplomacy, Gabrielius Landsbergis, is holding a meeting in Brussels tonight with Leonid Volkov, one of the Navy’s closest allies, to whom he invited all his counterparts. A dozen ministers will participate and other countries will be represented by the delegation.
Portugal will be represented on Monday by Foreign Affairs Minister Augusto Santos Silva at this meeting.