EU extends sanctions linked to interference in Ukraine

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BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union is prolonging sanctions against scores of Russian and Crimean officials as well as companies and groups accused of undermining Ukraine’s sovereignty and independence.

EU headquarters said in a statement Wednesday that asset freezes and travel bans against 170 people and 44 “entities,” including militias and banks, will be extended for six months until March 15, 2020.

The 28-nation bloc imposed a series of sanctions against Russia and separatists in Ukraine after Moscow annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine in 2014.

They include economic sanctions against Russia and bans on doing business in Crimea.

The EU says some measures could be lifted if Russia were to respect the Ukraine peace agreement sealed in 2015. More than 10,000 people have been killed in the conflict.

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