UK

Russian Foreign Ministry Says EU Sanctions Are 'Divorced From Reality'

22/03/2014 10:12 GMT | Updated 22/03/2014 10:59 GMT

According to Reuters, the Russian Foreign Ministry has said that sanctions imposed by the European Union on 12 Russians and Ukrainians on Friday over Crimea were "divorced from reality".

"It's a pity that the European Council made a decision that is divorced from reality," the ministry's spokesman Alexander said in a statement on the ministry's website.

Since Russia's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine, senior figures from Moscow have been slapped with EU sanctions designed to discourage escalation of tension in the region.

In total, the EU have announced asset freezes and travel bans against 33 individuals in Russia and Ukraine.

Yesterday, Prime Minister David Cameron warned that Russia faced international isolation and tighter sanctions unless Vladimir Putin took steps to defuse the crisis.

He also refused to rule out the possibility that Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich could be targeted.

Asked by reporters during a press conference in Brussels whether he would consider adding Russian oligarchs, including Abramovich, to the sanctions list, Cameron said: "We certainly haven't ruled anyone out from this approach."

Barack Obama has also imposed financial sanctions on seven top Russian officials and four Crimea-based separatist leaders seen as undermining "democratic processes and institutions in Ukraine".

They include Vladimir Putin's banker Yury Kovalchuk, Vladislav Surkov and Sergey Glazyev, aides to Mr Putin, Mr Dmitry Rogozin, and the proclaimed leader of Crimea Sergei Aksyonov.