EU envoy says unity prevails against Russia despite differences among 27 members


Published January 27, 2022 at 1:47 pm

OTTAWA — The European Union envoy in Ottawa says her 27-country bloc remains united in the face of a possible Russian invasion despite concern that some countries in Europe may be waffling due to economic self-interest.

Melita Gabrič, the EU ambassador to Canada, is rejecting reports that the EU is divided on its possible response to a Russian invasion because some of its countries are more economically dependent on Russia than others, especially for energy.

She says in an interview that Monday’s meeting of the EU’s foreign affairs council emerged with a strong, united front that said Russia would face severe consequences if it invades.

Gabrič also rejects Russian claims that new sanctions from by the West would have no effect, saying they would have massive economic consequences for the Kremlin.

Gabrič says Canada and the EU are co-ordinating closely on imposing fresh sanctions on Russia in the event it invades Ukraine.

Russia has positioned 100,000 troops across Ukraine’s borders along with tanks, sparking invasion fears across Europe and in the NATO military alliance, but Russia has denied it has a hostile intent.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 27, 2022.

Mike Blanchfield, The Canadian Press

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