Putin orders ag import bans in sanction retaliation

Reuters/Staff — Russia’s President Vladimir Putin signed a decree banning or limiting imports of agricultural products from countries which have imposed sanctions on Russia, the Kremlin’s press service said Wednesday.

Putin ordered his government to come up with a list of goods to be banned for imports into Russia and to last one year, the Kremlin said.

The order includes instructions for the government to “take measures to ensure balanced goods markets and prevent accelerating price rises for agricultural products and foodstuffs.”

It also calls for the government to work with producer and retailer groups and other bodies on “measures to increase supply of domestic goods.”

Putin’s order came at the same time as Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced sanctions another 19 Russian and Ukrainian individuals and 22 Russian and Ukrainian groups and entities.

Harper’s announcement cited “the Putin regime’s continued illegal occupation of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula and its provocative military activity in eastern Ukraine.”

Putin, Harper said, “has not provided any indication that he is prepared to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity or use his control over Russian-backed agents to end the violence in Ukraine.”

Despite the July 17 downing of a Malaysian Airlines passenger plane in Ukraine, Harper added, Russia “continues to provide logistical support and sophisticated weapons to its agents” in Ukraine’s east.

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