Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has asked the European Union to prepare new sectoral sanctions against the Russian Federation.
He announced this on Twitter on April 19.
"In today's EU Foreign Affairs Council I briefed colleagues on Russia's latest dangerous course. I proposed a step-by-step plan on how to discourage Moscow from further escalation. Key element: preparing a new set of sectoral sanctions. Individual ones are not sufficient anymore," he said.
On April 19, 2021, the EU Council at the level of foreign ministers discussed the situation along the Ukrainian-Russian border.
Before the meeting, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission Josep Borrell called on Russia to withdraw its troops from the Ukrainian border.
Lithuania's Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis, in turn, said that the European Union was ready to impose sanctions against the Russian Federation in the event of the outbreak of new hostilities on the border with Ukraine.
Russian troops amassing along Ukraine's borders
- On March 30, 2021, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Colonel-General Ruslan Khomchak said Russia had deployed 28 battalion tactical groups along the state border of Ukraine and in the temporarily occupied territories. It is also said to be planning to bring up to 25 battalion tactical groups under the guise of preparing for military drills. Such actions pose a threat to Ukraine's military security.
- According to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, enemy troops are reinforcing their advanced units with reconnaissance teams and sniper pairs, involving Russian army instructors in personnel training. Russia-led forces' artillery units are reportedly on full alert in certain districts, including villages and towns in occupied Ukrainian territory.
- On March 31, 2021, The New York Times reported Russia was pulling 4,000 troops to the border with Ukraine.
- Footage was shared on the Internet, showing a train with Russian military hardware en route along the Kerch Strait bridge to occupied Crimea.
- The U.S. European Command raised its alert status to the highest level after fighting had resumed between Russia-led forces and Ukrainian troops in Donetsk region.
- The U.S. Department of Defense said it was "aware of Russian troop movements" on Ukraine's borders and was concerned about recent escalations of Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine.
- The United States, finding reports of Russian military movements on Ukraine's border credible, asked Moscow to explain the "provocations" and is ready to engage on the situation.
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Moscow was trying to put pressure on Kyiv by amassing its military forces along the Russian-Ukrainian border.
- On April 8, 2021, Khomchak assured the situation was under control, and the Ukrainian military was ready to respond to the escalation both in the temporarily occupied territory of Luhansk and Donetsk regions and along the entire Ukrainian-Russian border.