UK warns Russia it's ready for sanctions

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  • Vladimir Putin
    Vladimir Putin
    President of Russia
  • Liz Truss
    Liz Truss
    British Conservative Party politician (born 1975)

The United Kingdom has warned Moscow officials it was working with its allies on high-impact sanctions targeting Russia's financial sector should it invade Ukraine.

"Any further military incursion into Ukraine would bring massive consequences, including co-ordinated sanctions to impose a severe cost on Russia's interests and economy," Foreign Secretary Liz Truss told parliament.

"The UK is working with our partners on these sanctions, including high impact measures targeting the Russian financial sector and individuals."

Russia has massed 100,000 troops near Ukraine's border and although Moscow officials say they have no plans to invade their neighbour, President Vladimir Putin has demanded legally-binding guarantees that NATO will not expand further eastwards.

"We will not accept the campaign Russia is waging to subvert its democratic neighbours," Truss told MPs.

"They have falsely cast Ukraine as a threat to justify their aggressive stance."

Putin says NATO's expansion eastwards since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union is a threat to Russia which, he says, has nowhere left to retreat to.

He has warned NATO countries against ignoring his concerns.

Truss said she would visit Kyiv later this month and that the situation was reaching a crucial moment with only one way forward: for Putin to step back from the brink.

The UK, Truss said, was opposed to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline under the Baltic Sea.

"Europe must reduce its dependence on Russian gas," Truss said.

"Britain remains opposed to Nord Stream 2 and I'm working with allies and partners to highlight the strategic risks of this project."

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