30 Apr 2021 21:09

Russia blacklists 8 EU citizens - Foreign Ministry

MOSCOW. April 30 (Interfax) - Russia has barred entry to eight citizens and officials of the European Union, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday.

"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation is authorized to announce that, in response to the restrictive measures introduced by the EU Council on March 2 and March 22 of this year against six Russian citizens, the following EU citizens and officials have been banned from entering Russia in accordance with the federal law on traveling to and from the Russian Federation, No.114-FZ, dated August 15, 1996," the ministry said in a statement on its website.

These eight citizens are Ivars Abolins, head of Latvia's National Electronic Mass Media Council; Maris Baltins, director of Latvia's State Language Center; Jacques Maire, member of the French delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE); Jorg Raupach, Berlin's chief prosecutor; David Maria Sassoli, president of the European Parliament; Osa Scott, head of the chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear laboratory at the Swedish Defense Research Agency; Ilmar Tomusk, director general of Estonia's Language Inspectorate; and EU deputy commissioner for values and transparency Vera Jourova.

The EU's continued policy of imposing illegitimate unilateral restrictive measures on Russian citizens and organizations runs counter to the UN charter and international law and is "accompanied by anti-Russian hysteria deliberately circulated by Western media. Not backed up by any evidence. All our proposals to resolve whatever problems arise between Russia and the EU through direct, professional dialogue have been consistently ignored or rejected," the ministry said.

"Such EU actions leave no doubt about their true goals: to hinder the development of our country at any cost, to impose their one-sided, 'rules-based world order' concept which undermines international law, to openly defy the independence Russia's foreign and domestic policies," it said.

"This is done openly and intentionally. And certainly with the knowledge and encouragement of the United States, which isn't hiding its interest in seeing Europe again turning into the stage of a fierce geopolitical confrontation," the ministry said.

Maire is the PACE special rapporteur on the suspected poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Jourova is the European Commission's vice president for values and transparency.

In an interview with Der Spiegel last September, Scott said that Navalny's test results suggested that he had been poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent.