G7 'to intensify Russia sanctions'
The G7 group of economic powers has agreed to intensify sanctions on Russia over its actions in Ukraine.
A G7 statement gave no detail of the sanctions, but US officials said they could announce measures by Monday, reports BBC.
Meanwhile, negotiators are trying to secure the release of international observers seized by pro-Russia gunmen.
Forces in the city of Slaviansk are still holding the eight European military observers and several Ukrainian army personnel who they seized on Friday and accuse of espionage.
The observers were taking part in a mission linked to the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
Meanwhile, the G7 praised Ukraine for acting with restraint in dealing with the "armed bands" that had occupied government buildings.
But the group, which includes the US, UK, Germany, Japan, France, Canada and Italy, condemned Russia's "increasingly concerning rhetoric and ongoing threatening military manoeuvres".
"Given the urgency of securing the opportunity for a successful and peaceful democratic vote next month in Ukraine's presidential elections, we have committed to act urgently to intensify targeted sanctions and measures to increase the costs of Russia's actions," said the statement.
White House sources told reporters that sanctions could be in place as early as Monday.
It is unclear what form they will take. Under current US and EU measures, assets freezes and travel bans have targeted a number of Russian officials.
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Reading Western news last night and this morning, the big sanctions are some more visa bans on Russians.
It is good that the West is so weak because the illegal government in Kiev can see that the West will talk big talk and only take insigificant action.
It is a good day for the self determination referendum protestors as they can carry on without obstacles.
Please set them free from the Facist government in Moscow and keep them free from the economic slavery being imposed by the Putin through the Kremlin.
Give the people of the Russia a federal system of government and let each state in the federation align with how the people choose in a referendum.
Yes our Orthodox and Jewish prayers are with the people of the Ukraine.
Please set them free from the illegal Facist government in Kiev and keep them free from the economic slavery being imposed by the West through the IMF.
Give the people of the Ukraine a federal system of government and let each state in the federation align with how the people choose in a referendum.
Perfect example of Americans brainwashed by anti Russian propaganda:
"Ukraine is where the prayers of the free world are now. What's it like for you in your Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist-Putinist/Medhead mind?"
These people are so stupid I'm surprised they are a superpower
Captain America call it what you like.
This G7 group did not sign the Geneva Deal on the Ukraine.
If the US was to behave in a proper manner it should discuss any further sanctions with the EU.
However it knows the EU will not swallow the US big lie about Russia being behibd the protests in Eastern Ukraine.
It is just America and its bullies abusing their economic power as the US knows it would not get the EU to agree to sanctions by using democratic processes.
US is behaving like a facist to support its new facist friends in Kiev?
Most Americans dont even know where the Ukraine is.
Captain America the G7 represents a self appointed group of bullies that the US has put pressure on to increase sanctions on Russia.
The EU was part of the Geneva deal but they are not involved in increasing sanctions.
So what is happening is The US and some bullies are getting together to intimidate Russia.
If there was consensus in the West the EU would be involved in the sanctions so clearly there is no consensus.
The deal signed in Geneva was between the Ukraine, the EU, the US and Russia.
The Ukraine broke this deal, it did not disarm the right sector protestors in Kiev and instead it sought to give them legal protection, Russia does not control the protestors in the East of Ukraine so it can do nothing.
America is building up its forces in the area and conducting military exercises and military flights in the area. Russia is responding to this American build up by having exercises as well.
So the American response is to get a group of bullies to threaten Russia with sanctions. Canada and Japan were not parties to the Geneva deal so they are responding to American pressure.
America is not involving the EU in sanctions because sensible Europeans will not join in the big American lie that Russia controls the protestors in the East Ukraine.
Europeans remember the weapons of mass destruction lie that was used to invade Iraq.