France ‘ready’ to ban Russian oil, says finance minister

  • France is “ready” to ban Russian oil after dozens of people were killed in an attack on a train station in Ukraine, the French finance minister told CNN.
  • “As far as France is concerned, we are ready to go further and decide on an oil ban,” said Bruno Le Maire.
  • The Mayor said banning Russian oil would be a game-changer.

France is “ready” to ban Russian oil after Ukrainian officials said dozens of evacuated civilians were killed in a Russian rocket attack on a train station, according to the French finance minister.

Bruno Le Maire, French Minister of Finance told CNN Friday that those responsible for the “massacre” which killed at least 50 people at the Kramatorsk train station in eastern Ukraine must be “identified, prosecuted and possibly convicted for these crimes”.

“As far as France is concerned, we are ready to go further and decide on the oil ban, and I am deeply convinced that the next steps and the next discussions will focus on this issue of the Russian oil ban”, said the Mayor. the press briefing.

The Mayor noted that banning Russian oil would be a game-changer, but explained that the support of the 27-nation European Union would be needed to impose tougher sanctions on Russia’s money-making energy sector.

Current EU sanctions against Russia are “the heaviest since the creation of the European Union”, Le Maire said.

European Union countries this week agreed to ban imports of Russian coal as part of a new set of sanctions against Russia for its six-week unprovoked war with Ukraine.

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission mentioned this week that an EU ban on Russian coal imports would cost Russia $4.4 billion a year.

Russia was the world’s third-largest coal exporter in 2020, according to the International Energy Agency.

The latest round of EU sanctions does not target imports of natural gas or oil from Russia.

“How much longer will Europe ignore the need to impose an embargo on Russia’s oil supplies? It’s a matter of security in every sense of the word, from environmental to military. “Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Friday in a virtual address to Finland’s parliament.

The European Commission said friday that she and the European External Action Service are working on additional proposals for possible sanctions against Russia, “including on oil imports, and considering some of the ideas put forward by member states, such as taxes or specific payment channels, such as an Escrow Account.”


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William D. Babcock

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