Relations between the Russian Federation and the countries of the European Union (EU) have reached a low level after the imposition of sanctions in connection with the incident with Alexei Navalny, said Russia's Permanent Representative to the EU Vladimir Chizhov. TASS reports his words.
“This decision [of the EU Council] confirmed our worst fears that relations between Russia and the EU would be brought to their lowest level in recent times,” Chizhov said.
He believes that there were clearly internal disagreements among those who supported the imposition of the sanctions, and therefore the press first reported about nine persons falling under them, then their number was reduced to six. At the same time, France and Germany, in his opinion, neither before nor after the introduction of the measures, provided anyone, including their allies, any evidence of the involvement of the persons who fell under the sanctions in what happened to Navalny, “in order to somehow justify such a step that is illegitimate in any case ”.
“The justification for these sanctions, both from a political and a legal point of view, is very feeble, but from a moral point of view, it is simply unacceptable,” Chizhov is sure. “There is only one authority in the world authorized to impose sanctions – the UN Security Council.”
On October 15, the European Union imposed sanctions against six Russians and one research institute over the situation with Navalny. In particular, the director of the FSB, Alexander Bortnikov, the head of the Russian president's internal policy department, Andrei Yarin, and others, fell under the sanctions.
Following the EU, the UK imposed restrictions. London will freeze assets and ban the entry of those allegedly responsible for what happened to the Russian. The sanctions will affect six people and one organization.
Navalny became ill on August 20 during a flight from Tomsk to Moscow. In the first two days, doctors from the Omsk hospital helped him. They also introduced him to an artificial coma. On August 22, the patient was sent to a clinic in Berlin, and in September he was taken out of the coma and discharged. German experts have identified a substance from the Novichok group in the oppositionist's body.