The European Commission is in contact with member states regarding the implementation of sanctions, Commission spokesperson Arianna Podesta told the Cyprus News Agency responding to a question on whether the Cypriot authorities have briefed the European Commission on their intended next steps regarding sanctions imposed by the US and the UK on Cypriot individuals and entities.
Responding to a question on whether the Commission is aware if the Cypriot persons and entities included in US and UK sanctions have assisted Russian oligarchs to circumvent EU sanctions as well, Podesta recalled that “EU sanctions are primarily an instrument of EU foreign and security policy” and that the Commission does not comment on possible future listings.
The spokesperson also chose not to respond whether the Commission has been informed by other member states on their intentions to apply the US – UK sanctions to those affected in their own jurisdictions.
More specifically, asked whether the Cypriot authorities informed the Commission on their intentions regarding this particular package of US – UK sanctions, Podesta responded that “what I can say is that we are in contact with all member states regarding the implementation of sanctions. And we have no comment on specific individual contacts.”
Responding to a request to clarify whether the authorities of other member states have contacted the Commission on this, Podesta repeated that the Commission is “of course in contact with all member states on the implementation of sanctions, but we won’t comment on individual contacts with them on these matters”.
Asked if the Commission is aware whether these individuals and entities have assisted Russian oligarchs to circumvent EU sanctions, the spokesperson said that “you know that EU sanctions are primarily an instrument of EU foreign and security policy”.
“Of course you know very well that we do not comment on possible future listings. In any case, EU sanctions are agreed with member states unanimously” she stressed.
Deputy head spokesperson Dana Spinant, said that “on sanctions we (the Commission) are tight lipped until we put anything on the table”.