Top French Diplomat Suggests Tougher Sanctions On Russia Ahead Of EU Meeting

Top French Diplomat Suggests Tougher Sanctions on Russia Ahead of EU Meeting

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 24th January, 2021) French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Sunday he wanted to see Russia slapped with tougher sanctions over arrests at pro-opposition protests.

EU foreign ministers will be briefed on the detention of opposition activist Alexey Navalny at a meet in Brussels on Monday.

"As for sanctions, they should be made really effective. This topic will be discussed at the European Council tomorrow," Le Drian told the France Inter television channel.

Thousands of protesters demanding Navalny's release from jail demonstrated across Russia on Saturday after a rallying call by his allies.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has warned against foreign meddling amid pro-Navalny rallies, condemning the US embassy for publishing maps of the protests and saying that US diplomats would be summoned over the incident.

Commenting on the West's repeated calls for Navalny's release, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said it is an attempt to shift attention from the crisis of the liberal model of development. According to the diplomat, his Western counterparts are visibly happy to churn out nearly identical statements.