On July 10, 2019, “Georgia and the World” published an interview of the former member of Georgian Parliament Soso Jachvliani. On the question of journalist about “what harm may anti-Russian rhetoric bring to Georgia”, Jachvliani answered, that Georgia should not rely on Europe, since it cancelled sanctions imposed on Russia over Crimean issue.
The statement by Soso Jachvliani that Europe lifted sanctions imposed on Russia over Crimea events, is misleading and aims to incite skepticism in society, as if the West and Europe will not protect Georgia from threats. This year, the European Union has prolonged the sanctions imposed on Russia in 2014 for another six months. The only restriction, which has been lifted, was Russia’s right to vote in the Council of Europe, which the latter explained by the issue of protection of the rights of Russian Federation citizens.
- Western countries have not cancelled the sanctions imposed on Russia
In 2014, the EU, the United States of America and several allies imposed the economic sanctions on Russia over the seizure of Crimean peninsula and support of separatists in Eastern Ukraine, Donetsk and Lugansk, the main target of which [the sanctions] was bank sphere and Russia’s energy sector.
The sanctions have not been cancelled and are periodically prolonged. On the meeting held in Brussels on June 20, 2019, the EU countries prolonged the sanctions for another 6 months, and in addition agreed to ban Russia’s investments into Crimean region for another 1 year.
On March 4 of the current year, the USA has also prolonged the punitive measures taken against Russia, which include air flight restrictions towards officials and freezing of assets.
- What does the sanctions imposed on Russia include?
Sanctions imposed on Russia include:
- Restrictions on weapon export-import;
- Freezing of assets and limitation of free movement – over of the violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, 152 persons and 37 organizations bank accounts have been frozen and their movement on the territory of European Union banned.
- Ban on buying the obligations and assets from Russia’s 5 state bank, 3 large energy companies and 3 leading defense companies, and making a loan for the listed organizations;
- Ban on the export of certain energy technologies and equipment in Russia.
The imposition of sanctions by the West in 2015 had a serious impact on Russia’s GDP, reducing it on average by 2.6% during the year.
Economists assume that after the period of economic growth in 2018, Russia’s economic growth will slow down and will be 1.2-1.8% in 2019-2021.
The only restriction towards Russia, which has been lifted, was the right to vote in the Council of Europe, which the latter explained by the issue of protection of the rights of the citizens of Russia.
According to the decision of June 25, 2019 of the Parliament of Council of Europe, Russian Federation restored its right to vote in the Council of Europe, which it has been deprived of after the annexation of Crimea in 2014. Although the decision caused negative assessments from Ukraine and other Post-Soviet space countries, the Council of Europe stated, that otherwise Russia threatened to leave the Council of Europe, which would result in cancellation of the right of citizens of Russia to file an application to the European Court of Human Rights.
Prepared by Mariam Kvirkvaia
Myth Detector Lab