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'Fruitless, illegal': Russia slams EU's 13th package of sanctions

A ministerial meeting at the EU Council headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. (File photo by Getty)

Moscow has condemned as "illegal" and "fruitless" a fresh package of sanctions the European Union adopted against the country on Friday. 

The European Council said in a press release on Friday that the 27 EU member states, in addition to the United Kingdom, had agreed with the 13th package of sanctions against Russia.

The new sanctions targeting 106 individuals and 88 entities take effect as Moscow's special military operation in eastern Ukraine enters its third year this Saturday.

The latest measures, consisting of asset freezes and a travel ban, primarily target the military and defense sectors, along with associated individuals, as well as members of the judiciary.

Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the EU’s “fruitless” sanctions, noting that the measures aim to mount pressure on Russia through “unilateral restrictive measures.”

The ministry, in its Friday statement, described the move as "illegal", noting the sanctions undermine the international prerogatives of the UN Security Council.

It said Moscow, in retaliation, had decided to expand its list of representatives of European institutions and EU member states who were banned from entering Russia.

The Russian Foreign Ministry warned that any unfriendly actions by these countries will receive a timely and adequate response from Moscow.

Since the start of the Ukraine war in February 2022, Brussels has been slapping sanctions on Russia, targeting a broad range of sectors and include trade embargoes, travel bans, and individual sanctions against Russian businessmen and public officials.

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