No breakthrough at EU summit: oil embargo is in the distance

Before the start of the EU summit, many participants are still confident that the international community would find a compromise on the oil embargo against Russia.

No breakthrough at EU summit: oil embargo is in the distance

Before the start of the EU summit, many participants are still confident that the international community would find a compromise on the oil embargo against Russia. At the end of the first day, it looks like the optimists were wrong. The frustration is not only deep with the Ukrainian president.

The 27 heads of state and government of the European Union were unable to agree on an oil embargo against Russia until late Monday evening. It is more realistic to expect an agreement in a few weeks, said Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas. This could only be the case at the next EU summit on June 23rd and 24th.

According to an incomplete draft for the sixth package of sanctions, imports of Russian oil through ports are to be stopped. The oil imports via a pipeline to Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic are to be ended later. It is expected that diplomats and ministers will now work out exactly how the planned sanctions will be implemented. This includes, for example, the question of fair competition between the states that still purchase Russian oil and those that no longer receive it.

"We're missing the big picture," said Lithuanian Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins. "It's just money. Ukrainians pay with their lives." One must support Ukraine, even if it is only out of self-interest. Because Europe can only feel safe if Russia is defeated.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj expressed his disappointment at the EU's lack of agreement on new sanctions. "Why are you dependent on Russia, on its pressure, and not the other way around?" he asked EU leaders. "Russia must depend on you. Why can Russia still make almost a billion euros a day selling energy?" he asks, looking at the ongoing import of oil and gas from Russia.

Before the start of the EU summit, which lasts until Tuesday, Chancellor Olaf Scholz had expressed confidence that the EU countries would impose an oil embargo. "Everything I hear sounds like there could be a consensus," said Scholz in Brussels. "And sooner or later there will be." EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen had also emphasized that all questions in this regard had actually been clarified.

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