by CHRYSTAL STASICKY Media Editor
New sanctions the European Union government (EU) made against Russia over the Ukraine crisis will take effect on Friday, while the United States organizes its own sanctions for the country.
The purpose of the sanctions is to keep a superior role over Russia and its position in the Ukraine crisis. However, the EU sanctions may be lifted if Russia holds a ceasefire in Ukraine.
“I, as do many other people, hope that Russia will understand the sanctions being put against it and will solve things peacefully,” said senior Victoria Marino.
The U.S. wants to restrict Russian banks’ access to U.S. capital and sanction Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank.
The European Union government stopped exports of military equipment in Russia, excluded Russian state banks from raising long-term loans, banned EU-Russia arms deals, and refused to export a wide range of the oil industry technology.
Rosneft, Transneft, and Gazprom Neft are the major oil companies that are being targeted because the firms are threatening Ukraine.
The European Government is also targeting individuals apart of President Putin’s companions. Yuri Kovalchuck and Nikolai Shamalo, Bank Rossiya’s biggest shareholders, are blacklisted. Arkady Rotenberg, Sergei Chemezov, and Vyacheslav Volodin share close relationships with Mr. Putin and are also a part of the sanctions.
The sanctions against them include an asset freeze and travel ban. An asset freeze means that they are not allowed to buy or sell their assets, including bank accounts, shares, and economic resources such as property. The travel ban stops these individuals from entering an EU country, even if they are in transit, and they will be placed on a visa blacklist.
Senior Danielle Mazur says, “I understand that the European Government is trying to solve the Ukraine crisis, but they may be going too far by targeting all these people who are only involved with Putin. These people are not responsible for the crisis, they are just bystanders. However, I guess being a bystander makes you just as guilty.”
The sanctions make it hard for banks and energy companies to get capital from the U.S. and the EU. The asset freezes against Putin’s rich and political friends will not affect them much, but the travel bans will.
People are saying that the sanctions are harmful to the Russian economy, which has slumped this year, but it is something that has to be done to solve the Ukraine crisis and prevent war.
Senior Umbereen Rashid said, “It may be a punishment to harm the Russian economy with the sanctions, but sometimes a bad thing has to happen for people to understand that what they are doing is not right. Hopefully, this punishment will make Russia stand down and [agree to a] ceasefire so this problem can be solved and a war doesn’t occur.”
What do you think about the sanctions? Do you think they are harmful or good?