EU leaders agreed to extend sanctions against Russia by six months

The leaders of the member countries of the EU agreed to extend economic sanctions against Russia for another six months. On Thursday, December 15, reports Reuters, citing a diplomatic source.

A formal decision will be made in the coming days in the Committee of permanent representatives of the European Union, notes TASS.

The effect of sectoral economic restrictive measures against Russia will expire on 31 January 2017. Under the agreement, the validity period will be extended until 31 July of the following year.

A number of countries, including the USA and member States of the European Union have imposed sanctions against Moscow in 2014, linking them with the annexation of Crimea to Russia, and then the conflict in the South-East of Ukraine.

The abolition of these restrictions linked with the implementation of the Moscow Minsk agreements. In February 2015 in Minsk, an agreement was signed on stabilization of the situation in the South-East of Ukraine. Agreement, in particular, called for a cease-fire, withdrawal of heavy weapons from the contact line of the warring parties, and constitutional reform in Ukraine.

Russia has repeatedly said that is not party to the conflict in the Donbass, therefore, the responsibility for implementing the provisions of the Minsk agreements rests on the Kiev authorities and militia leaders.