The European Union (EU) and the United States are preparing to keep sanctions against Russia in place in 2016, according to Bloomberg.
Moscow
© DELFI (V.Stašaitytės nuotr.)

Russia was sanctioned following the annexation of Crimea and destabilization of east Ukraine.

The US measures, adopted by presidential order, remain effective until they are cancelled. The EU's sanctions expire at the end of January and an extension requires the approval of all 28 EU member-states.

France, Germany, Ukraine, and Russia are set to discuss extending the Minsk peace accord at a summit in Paris on 2 October, according to a person involved in Kremlin policy, as Bloomberg reports.

Prolonging the truce means sanctions will stay, according to four German, French, and US officials.

A Kremlin aide said last week that an extension may be necessary, even as Russian President Vladimir Putin said the warring sides should stick to the negotiated year-end deadline.

Meanwhile, Ukraine's leaders have said they oppose granting more time to carry out obligations under the accord.

As reported, in February 2014 Russia occupied the Crimean peninsula that belonged to Ukraine. In March, Crimea was annexed. Over the past years, Russia has also been backing a bloody separatist movement in Eastern Ukraine.

In response to Russia's aggression in Ukraine, the EU, the United States, and other Western countries have imposed sanctions against Russia's top officials, Kremlin associates, and Russia's financial, defence, and energy sectors.

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