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Russia warns the West: Our sanctions will hurt you

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Russia warned the West on Wednesday that it was working on a broad response to sanctions that would be swift and felt in the West’s most sensitive areas.

An oil treatment plant in the Yarakta Oil Field in Irkutsk Region, Russia. Picture: Reuters/Vasily Fedosenko

LONDON – Russia warned the West on Wednesday that it was working on a broad response to sanctions that would be swift and felt in the West’s most sensitive areas.

Russia’s economy is facing the gravest crisis since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union after the West imposed crippling sanctions on almost entire Russian financial and corporate system following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Russia’s reaction will be swift, thoughtful and sensitive for those it addresses,” Dmitry Birichevsky, the director of the foreign ministry’s department for economic cooperation, was quoted as saying by the RIA news agency.

US President Joe Biden on Tuesday imposed an immediate ban on Russian oil and other energy imports in retaliation for the invasion.

Russia warned earlier this week that oil prices could shoot up to over $300 per barrel if the United States and European Union banned imports of crude from Russia.

Russia says Europe consumes about 500 million tons of oil a year. Russia supplies around 30% of that, or 150 million tonnes, as well as 80 million tonnes of petrochemicals.

Russian President Vladimir Putin says the “special military operation” is essential to ensure Russian security after the United States enlarged the Nato military alliance to Russia’s borders and supported pro-Western leaders in Kyiv.

Ukraine says it is fighting for its existence and the United States and its European and Asian allies have condemned the Russian invasion.

China, the world’s second largest economy, has called for restraint but President Xi Jinping has cautioned that sanctions will slow down the world economy.

– REUTERS

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