Vilnius insists it didn’t introduce any further restrictions however is definitely adhering to EU sanctions
Lithuania’s International Ministry on Monday handed a word to Moscow’s chargé d’affaires within the nation explaining the appliance of EU sanctions on the transit of numerous items between mainland Russia and Kaliningrad, a Russian exclave nestled between Poland and Lithuania.
Vilnius insists that it has not outright banned transit between the exclave and the remainder of Russia and has not launched any further restrictions. Lithuania maintains that the transit of passengers and items not topic to EU sanctions will proceed by way of its territory as standard.
“Lithuania has not imposed any unilateral, particular person, or further restrictions on the transit. Lithuania has constantly carried out EU sanctions, which have completely different transition intervals and deadlines for entry into drive,” learn the word.
Earlier, Lithuanian International Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis said that the choice to impose these restrictions was made by Vilnius after consulting with the European Fee and was carried out beneath its steerage.
Lithuania’s state railway service, LTG Cargo, which operates the one overland rail route that hyperlinks Kaliningrad with mainland Russia, introduced on Saturday that it’ll not enable the transit of EU sanctioned items by way of its territory.
The service cited a clarification from the European Fee stating that if sanctioned items and cargoes journey from one a part of Russia to a different, however by way of the territory of the EU, their transit ought to be prohibited.
Russian authorities have since slammed the transfer as an ‘financial blockade’ of Kaliningrad Area. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov famous on Monday that Vilnius’s resolution was “unprecedented” and “a violation of something and every part.”
Russian International Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Vilnius’s “provocative” actions are a violation of the nation’s worldwide authorized obligations to permit the transit of cargo between Russia and Kaliningrad. She mentioned that Russia sees this transfer as “overtly hostile” and that except Lithuania instantly lifts these restrictions, Russia reserves the appropriate to “defend its nationwide pursuits.”
In the meantime, the top of Russia’s fee for the protection of state sovereignty, Andrey Klimov, has argued that Lithuania’s transfer was an act of “direct aggression” in opposition to Moscow and that except the EU introduced its member state to heel, Russia would have a free hand to “clear up the issue of the Kaliningrad transit created by Lithuania by ANY means chosen by us.”
In accordance with Kaliningrad Governor Anton Alikhanov, who warned of Vilnius’s intentions on Friday, the brand new restrictions, which ban the transit of products comparable to coal, metals, building supplies and superior expertise, will have an effect on practically 50% of all cargo circulate to the area.
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