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Canada, Poland to unveil Ukraine help package as Harper blasts Russia, Putin

OTTAWA - Canada and Poland will announce a joint package to assist Ukraine when Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird visits Warsaw next week. Marcin Bosacki, the Polish ambassador to Canada, says in an interview with The Canadian Press that the assistance will include measures to strengthen Ukraine's democratic institutions. Harper met today with Bosacki and envoys from Ukraine, Georgia, Latvia, Estonia and the Czech Republic before condemning Russia's actions against Ukraine as "aggressive, militaristic and imperialistic" and a grave threat to world peace.

EU to expand Ukraine sanctions list

European Union foreign ministers agreed Monday to expand the list of those subject to sanctions for their role in the Ukraine crisis, EU foreign affairs head Catherine Ashton said. "In light of events, we decided to expand the list of those subject to asset freezes and visa bans," Ashton said, with 33 Ukrainian and Russian officials and business leaders, including members of Russian President Vladimir Putin's inner circle, already targeted. jri/bmm/jhb

US warns Russia of more sanctions over Ukraine

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew warned his Russian counterpart Thursday of more sanctions if Moscow "continues to escalate" the crisis in Ukraine. Lew also expressed to Finance Minister Anton Siluanov concerns about reports that Moscow was discussing an oil-for-goods trade deal with Iran, the Treasury said in a statement. In a meeting on the sidelines of IMF/World Bank spring meetings in Washington, Lew told Siluanov that "Russia's ongoing occupation and purported annexation of Crimea is illegal and illegitimate."

US warns Russia of more sanctions over Ukraine

US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew warned his Russian counterpart Thursday of more sanctions if Moscow "continues to escalate" the crisis in Ukraine. Lew also expressed to Finance Minister Anton Siluanov concerns about reports that Moscow was discussing an oil-for-goods trade deal with Iran, the Treasury said in a statement. In a meeting on the sidelines of IMF/World Bank spring meetings in Washington, Lew told Siluanov that "Russia's ongoing occupation and purported annexation of Crimea is illegal and illegitimate."

West's targeted Russian sanctions ensnare investors

By Jakub Iglewski and Megan Davies WARSAW/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Elektrobudowa, a Polish firm that builds power plants, is interested in buying its partner out of a Russian company they jointly own, but there is a problem: the partner firm is owned by a pro-Moscow Crimean politician on the EU's sanctions list. To buy out the partner would mean Elektrobudowa transferring cash or assets to the owners, and that, say lawyers who specialize in sanctions law, could be interpreted as a violation of the EU measures.

West's targeted Russian sanctions ensnare investors

By Jakub Iglewski and Megan Davies WARSAW/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Elektrobudowa, a Polish firm that builds power plants, is interested in buying its partner out of a Russian company they jointly own, but there is a problem: the partner firm is owned by a pro-Moscow Crimean politician on the EU's sanctions list. To buy out the partner would mean Elektrobudowa transferring cash or assets to the owners and that, say lawyers who specialise in sanctions law, could be interpreted as a violation of the EU measures.

West's targeted Russian sanctions ensnare investors

By Jakub Iglewski and Megan Davies WARSAW/MOSCOW (Reuters) - Elektrobudowa, a Polish firm that builds power plants, is interested in buying its partner out of a Russian company they jointly own, but there is a problem: the partner firm is owned by a pro-Moscow Crimean politician on the EU's sanctions list. To buy out the partner would mean Elektrobudowa transferring cash or assets to the owners and that, say lawyers who specialize in sanctions law, could be interpreted as a violation of the EU measures.

Kremlin confirms Putin's divorce final

The Kremlin confirmed Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin has finalised the divorce from his wife of 30 years Lyudmila following the couple's sudden split last summer. Putin's official biography, which described him as recently as March 27 as "Married. Wife Lyudmila Aleksandrovna Putina," now states simply that he has two daughters with no mention of a first lady. The president's spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed to state-owned Itar-TASS news agency that "the divorce has completed."

Germany's Schaeuble likens Putin moves to Hitler's

German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble on Monday compared Russia's seizure of Crimea to Nazi aggression in Czechoslovakia on the eve of World War II, according to a media report. The outspoken veteran politician said Russian President Vladimir Putin's declared desire to protect Russians and Russian-speakers in Crimea was similar to how Hitler justified the Third Reich's expansionist drive. "Such methods were already adopted by Hitler in Sudetenland," Schaeuble told schoolchildren at a ministry event, news weekly Der Spiegel reported on its website.

Putin says Crimea showed 'new capacities' of Russian army

President Vladimir Putin on Friday congratulated the Russian armed forces for their role in the takeover by Moscow of Crimea from Ukraine, saying they had shown the new capacities of the Russian army. "The recent events in Crimea were a serious test. They demonstrated the new capacities of our armed forces in terms of quality and the high moral spirit of the personnel," he said at a televised military ceremony.
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