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EC unanimously approves proposal submitted to EU Council on sixth package of sanctions against Russia

BRUSSELS. May 4 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Official representative of the European Commission (EC) Eric Mamer said the commission’s proposal on the sixth package of sanctions against Russia submitted to the EU Council was unanimously approved by the members of the EU executive board.

At a briefing in Brussels, the spokesperson said that as for the proposal’s support by the commission it was complete. According to him, the proposal was approved through a written procedure, which in any case requires the unanimous consent of all members of the board.

Mamer, at the request of journalists, commented on the statement made earlier in the day by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen at the plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg on the proposal of the European Commission for the sixth package of sanctions, which is further considered by EU member states, first at the level of the committee of permanent representatives of the EU countries and then it will be formally approved by the Council of the EU.

In a future decision, the council will either accept the proposal of the European Commission, or make a number of changes that it considers necessary, the representative of the commission said.

As for the expected measures to reduce oil supplies from Russia, Mamer recalled the words of the head of the EC that some member states are completely dependent on the import of Russian oil. The ban on Russian oil imports is supposed to be in an orderly manner, so the spokesperson said he would refrain from commenting on the timing.

Although, Mamer said, von der Leyen generally outlined the period for imposing a ban on imports: six months for crude oil and until the end of the year for refined oil.

The EC representative said the Commission provides for exceptions for the most dependent countries that have no room for such maneuver. It fully recognizes that some Member States, given their geographical position, are in a situation of dependence on oil delivered from Russia. The commission recognizes the specific nature of this situation. This should be taken into account. The council should decide on the further course of this procedure, the official said.

Mamer said the Chair said the implementation of these measures will put some pressure on Russia, avoiding collateral damage for themselves, as well as for their partners. This proposal is based on this logic, according to him.

Responding to a clarifying question, he said it is needed to find a balance between applying pressure and reducing the negative consequences that this could have.