Russia Ukraine conflict

G7 vows new Russia sanctions if invasion continues

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Leaders of the G7 group of wealthy nations on Sunday threatened fresh sanctions against Russia if it continues its invasion of Ukraine and vowed not to recognize Moscow’s military gains.

Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Britain and the United States warned in a joint statement that they would “take further steps” to add to the sanctions already announced if Russia did not cease its operation.

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Russian military gains in Ukraine achieved through its ongoing campaign leading to “any change of status” such as the annexation of territory “will not be recognized,” G7 foreign ministers said in a joint statement.

The West has already slapped harsh sanctions on Russia for invading neighboring Ukraine.

It has excluded some Russian banks from the international bank payments system SWIFT and personally targeted President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

The European Union on Sunday announced plans to bar Russian planes from its airspace, after individual member states and Britain had earlier taken similar measures.

Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula in 2014, but the West has refused to recognize the change in territorial status.

Moscow also backed separatists in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk and Lugansk regions from 2014 in a conflict that has claimed more than 14,000 lives, according to monitoring groups.

Putin’s decision to recognize the breakaway republics as independent states this week sparked international condemnation as an assault on Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

The move proved to be a prelude to Thursday’s invasion.

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