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EU slaps Russia with more sanctions over Ukraine war

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By Euronews  with AP
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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen addresses a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, July 20, 2022.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen addresses a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, July 20, 2022.   -   Copyright  Virginia Mayo/AP

The European Union has imposed more sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine after the bloc's member states backed a series of measures that would include gold imports and tighten export controls on some high-technology goods.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that the “reinforced, prolonged EU sanctions against the Kremlin" send "a strong signal to Moscow".

"We will keep the pressure high for as long as it takes," she said.

The details of the sanctions are still unclear as they still need to be posted in the EU's official journal.

EU officials have been seeking all week to tighten the extensive package of sanctions on Russia and looking at ways to add a ban on gold exports in hopes that the measures might finally start to have a decisive impact on the war in Ukraine.

EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said on Monday that at the moment "the most important thing is a ban on Russian gold," which is Moscow’s second-largest export industry after energy.

The G7 last month already committed to a gold ban, arguing that Russia has used its gold to prop up the rouble following several rounds of sanctions that nations around the world had already imposed on Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine on 24 February.

On top of the restrictive measures, the EU also decided to grant €500 million to boost military aid to Ukraine.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy dismissed the EU's latest sanctions package in his nightly video address on Wednesday.

"This is not enough and I am telling my partners this frankly," he said. "Russia must feel a much higher price for the war to force it to seek peace."