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No special help for Canadian firms caught in Russia sanctions crossfire: Moore

OTTAWA - Industry Minister James Moore says he can offer sympathy but little help to Canadian firms affected by sanctions against Russia, adding they should have seen the situation coming. The minister made the comments during a teleconference Thursday following his trade mission to the Netherlands as Prime Minister Stephen Harper and German Chancellor Angela Merkel were turning up the heat on Russia over its annexation of Crimea.

EU states in Russia's shadow fearful about tougher sanctions

By Christian Lowe and Robert Muller WARSAW/PRAGUE (Reuters) - The European Union states that used to be behind the Iron Curtain have most to fear from Russian aggression, yet also most to lose from imposing sanctions, and for now the fear of losing money is winning out. Messages over the past week from officials in the EU's 11 ex-Communist member countries indicate that most of them are going to be very resistant to any attempt by the bloc to impose the next stage of sanctions, on trade and economic ties.

Lavrov calls economic sanctions over Crimea 'dead-end route'

Attempts to isolate Moscow through economic sanctions are a dead-end, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Friday, a day after Washington imposed sanctions on senior Russians over the Ukraine crisis. Referring to "statements made in Washington about economic sanctions," Lavrov said that "following the lead of open Russophobes who are trying to twist this situation so as to isolate Russia, is... a dead-end route and I think serious politicians should not kowtow to such ambitions," according to the state RIA Novosti news agency. am/as/yad

Sanctions headache worsens for West after Russia Crimea grab

Vladimir Putin's annexation of Crimea on Tuesday increases the pressure on western governments to hit Russia with tough sanctions but, as momentum for action grows, there are no easy options. Trade and economic sanctions could do real damage to the Russian economy and Moscow's power of reprisal is limited, analysts say. But punitive measures would not come without a price for the countries adopting them, hence the diplomatic horse-trading currently going on over the share-out of the burden.

U.S. investigates two French banks for sanctions violations: source

By Emily Flitter NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. authorities are investigating whether two French banks violated anti-money laundering rules and economic embargoes on countries like Iran, according to a person familiar with the investigation. Regulators in New York and Washington are looking at potential violations by Credit Agricole and Societe Generale of U.S. economic sanctions imposed against the countries, the source said.

Russia says it would retaliate for U.S. sanctions over Ukraine

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Tuesday that it would retaliate if the United States imposed sanctions over Moscow's actions in Ukraine. "We will have to respond," Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in a statement. "As always in such situations, provoked by rash and irresponsible actions by Washington, we stress: this is not our choice." "We have frequently explained to the Americans ... why unilateral sanctions do not fit the standards of civilized relations between states," Lukashevich said.

Iran arrests anti-corruption officials for fraud

Iran has arrested several anti-corruption officials on fraud charges, the justice minister announced on Sunday. "In the Government Discretionary Punishments Organisation (GDPO), some of our colleagues have been corrupted," Mostafa Pour-Mohammadi said, quoted by Fars news agency. "In line with the fight against corruption, more than 10 colleagues in GDPO, most of them managers and consultants, were arrested and interrogated," he said, without giving further details. On its website, the GDPO says it was set up to fight economic and financial corruption.

U.S. regulators reach settlement with RBS over sanction breaches

U.S. regulators reach settlement with RBS over sanction breaches WASHINGTON, Dec. 11 (Xinhua)-- U.S. Treasury Department announced Wednesday that it reached an agreement of 33 million dollars with the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) over sanction violations, as part of a combined 100-million-dollar settlement between the British bank and U.S. financial regulators. The Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) said the settlement resolves its investigation into RBS' violations of U.S. sanctions relating to Iran, Sudan, Myanmar and Cuba.

Analysis: U.S. sanctions make Cuba's bank account too toxic for banks

By David Adams MIAMI (Reuters) - The decision by a New York bank to close Cuba's checking account in the United States has presented an unusual diplomatic quandary that provides a test for new-found pragmatism in relations between the two longtime foes.

Analysis: U.S. sanctions make Cuba's bank account too toxic for banks

By David Adams MIAMI (Reuters) - The decision by a New York bank to close Cuba's checking account in the United States has presented an unusual diplomatic quandary that provides a test for new-found pragmatism in relations between the two longtime foes.
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