EU foreign ministers on Friday adopted a second package of sanctions against Russia following its invasion of Ukraine, including a freeze on the assets of President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, and said it was ready for further measures unless the situation changed.
“The assets of President Putin and Minister Lavrov are being frozen. We want to see whether this package of sanctions will effect change to the direction of Russian policy. If Russia continues the invasion and aggression, a new wave of even stronger measures will follow,” Croatian Foreign Minister Gordan Grlic-Radman told the press after the meeting.
During the meeting, the EU foreign ministers were addressed by Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba from Kyiv, describing the dramatic situation in his country.
“I said in my speech that those images reminded me of the Serbian military aggression against Croatia in the 1990s,” Grlic-Radman said.
He said he had drawn attention to the risk of the conflict spilling over to the Western Balkans.
Speaking of Serbia, which has avoided an unequivocal condemnation of the Russian aggression and refused to join the EU sanctions against Russia, Grlic-Radman said “it’s hard to have a foot in both camps.”
“If Serbia has opted for the European perspective, then it’s only logical for it to choose the right side, and that is Europe, a community of values,” he added.
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said later on Friday that his country fully supported Ukraine’s territorial integrity, but would not impose sanctions on any other country, including Russia, citing Serbia’s vital national interests.