EC to propose embargo on Russian oil

EU

The European Commission will propose a "complete import ban" on Russian oil, the president of the European Union's executive body told lawmakers in the European Parliament on Wednesday, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

"Today we will propose to ban all Russian oil from Europe. This will be a complete import ban on all Russian oil, seaborne, and pipeline, crude and refined," Ursula von der Leyen told MEPs.

She said the proposed embargo would involve a phase-out of Russian crude "within six months" and of refined products by the end of the year.

"Let's be clear: it will not be easy, because some member states are strongly dependent on Russian oil. But we simply have to do it," she added.

Von der Leyen said the EC would propose excluding Sberbank, Russia's biggest lender, along with two other "major" Russian banks from the SWIFT system of international bank transfers.

It will also propose banning three big Russian state-owned broadcasters from EU airwaves, blocking their content via cable, satellite, internet, and smartphone apps, she added.

She also said the EC would propose a ban on the services of "accountants, consultants, and spin-doctors from Europe" to Russian companies.

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