Borrell assures that the sanctions against Russia for the invasion of Ukraine “are having an effect”

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrel. – -/European Council/dpa

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MADRID, July 16 (.) –

The High Representative for Foreign Policy and Common Security of the European Union, Josep Borrell, assured this Saturday that the international sanctions against Russia for invading Ukraine are “having an effect” and has asked for “strategic patience” on the resulting energy crisis because “it is the price to pay to defend democracy”.

“Sanctions require strategic patience because it can take a long time for them to have the desired effect,” Borrell explained on his personal blog in a text in which he recalled that, since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24, Brussels has adopted six packages of sanctions against Moscow, targeting almost 1,200 people and almost 100 entities in Russia.

Borrell has defended that sanctions, including restrictions on the purchase of Russian oil, “remain an important instrument of political action.”

The EU’s top diplomat has acknowledged that “Russia can sell its oil to other markets but this benefit is limited by the fact that Russia is forced to offer large discounts for each barrel”, before indicating that this restriction “frees Europe from its energy dependency on Russia”, a long-standing issue on the table in Brussels.

“Reducing our structural energy dependence on Russia matters a lot because this dependence has been an obstacle to developing a strong European policy in the face of Moscow’s aggressive actions”, he has extended in this regard, in what he has described as a European process of ” detoxification” of Russian energy.

“By breaking away from its energy dependency, in line with its climate ambition, the EU is learning that interdependence is not always a neutral and win-win instrument,” he said.

Borrell has defended the effectiveness of the sanctions against Russia, which is now trying to substitute imports for national products; a relatively successful policy in the agricultural sector but “much more difficult to achieve” in high-tech products.

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“Sanctions on imports of semiconductors, for example, have a direct impact on Russian companies that produce consumer electronics, computers, aircraft, cars or military equipment,” Borrell has given as an example.

The diplomat has warned that the war “will be long” and the “test” hard, but “allowing Russia to prevail would mean allowing the destruction of democracies and the very basis of the world order based on international norms.”

To the countries most vulnerable to the crisis, such as the African ones, Borrell has extended the hand of the EU. “We are ready to help with any difficulties you may encounter in relation to our sanctions, while urging you not to be misled by the lies and misinformation of the Russian authorities regarding this issue,” he said.

“Since we don’t want to go to war with Russia, economic sanctions and Ukraine’s support are at the core of this response. And our sanctions are beginning to have an effect and will do so even more in the coming months,” he concluded.

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