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G7 mulls tougher Russian sanctions

Brussels - Group of Seven leaders said on Wednesday they remain prepared to slap tougher sanctions on Russia, despite a successful election in Ukraine, if unrest in the east of the country is not brought under control.

“We stand ready to intensify targeted sanctions and to consider meaningful additional restrictive measures to impose further costs on Russia should events so require,” the leaders said in a joint statement after evening talks in Brussels.

US President Barack Obama (R) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel listen during the G7 Summit working dinner in Brussels June 4, 2014. Credit: Reuters

German Chancellor Angela Merkel told a news conference that the West would check “again and again” to see if there was progress in calming eastern Ukraine where government forces are battling separatists.

“We cannot afford a further destabilisation in Ukraine,” she said.

“If we do not have progress in the questions we have to solve there is the possibility of sanctions, even heavy sanctions of phase 3 on the table.” - Reuters

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