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British PM warns of more European sanctions against Russia
July 22, 2014, 8:47 am

British Prime Minister David Cameron warned on Monday of fresh European sanctions against Russia, that will include military deals, banks and the financial sector.

Addressing MPs at the House of the Commons on the developments in Ukraine today, Cameron said that the Malaysian Airlines crash in east Ukraine is a "defining moment" for Russia, adding that more pressure has to be practiced on some European partners to convince them to review their work with Moscow.

"We must do what is necessary to stand up to Russia", he said. Up to 298 people, including 10 Britons, died when flight MH17 crashed in a pro-Russian rebel-held area in Ukraine last week.

Cameron said that Moscow was fuelling the Ukraine conflict by arming the rebels, saying it was unlikely the plane was shot deliberately - but in the meantime warned of "hard-hitting" sanctions if Moscow did not change course on Ukraine. He urged Moscow to stop training separatists or supplying them with weapons.

Cameron also said: "The context for this tragedy is Russia's attempt to destabilise a sovereign state, violate its territorial integrity and arm and train thuggish militias." He said the "weight of evidence" pointed to the jet being shot by a missile fired by pro-Russian separatists and that "a conflict that could have been curtailed by Moscow, has instead been fermented by Moscow".

"President Putin faces a clear choice in how he decides to respond to this appalling tragedy. I hope he will use this moment to find a path out of this festering and dangerous crisis by ending Russia's support for the separatists," Cameron told the Commons. "If he does not change his approach to Ukraine in this then Europe and the West must fundamentally change our approach to Russia." For Cameron, the rest of the European Union could no longer "turn a blind eye" to the crisis.

If Moscow does not "change course", he said: "Russia cannot expect to continue enjoying access to European markets, European capital, European knowledge and technical expertise while she fuels conflict in one of Europe's neighbours." The British prime Minister said that the meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels on Tuesday will discuss fresh sanctions on Moscow.

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