MOSCOW, April 29 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Prosecutor General Yury Chaika said Tuesday that the West’s sanctions against Russia were “ungrounded.”
“I believe that this doesn’t fit into any frame, starting with the ‘Magnitsky Law,'” Chaika said during a session of the country’s upper house of parliament, the Federation Council.
The European Union on Tuesday imposed sanctions on 15 additional Russian and Ukrainian officials. The EU Council said in a statement it had decided to expand the existing list of sanctioned individuals “in view of the gravity of the situation” in Ukraine, where clashes continue between pro-federalization activists and Ukrainian troops.
The news came after the US Treasury announced Monday it had imposed sanctions, including asset freezes and visa bans, on seven Russian individuals as well as 17 Russian companies linked to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “inner circle.”
White House spokesman Jay Carney said the sanctions were in response to Crimea’s reunification with Russia, which the United States does not acknowledge, as well as Russia’s stance on Ukraine.
Russia has in the past responded to such targeted sanctions in a proportional manner. A 2012 US blacklist of Russian officials blamed for the death of whistleblowing lawyer Sergei Magnitsky in 2009 spurred the country last year to retaliate with a similar list of US officials banned from entering the country.