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EU urged not to wage economic war with Russia over Ukraine crisis

Friday, 21 March 2014 - 10:49am IST | Place: Brussels (Belgium) | Agency: IANS
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Hannes Swoboda, leader of the centre-left Socialists and Democrats group in the European Parliament, urged leaders of the European Union (EU) on Thursday not to stir up a trade war with Russia.

"Europeans need jobs. A trade war would harm EU economies, some of them more seriously than others," Xinhua quoted Swooba as saying on EurActiv, an EU based online media organization.

Swoboda made the remarks as the leaders from EU member countries gathered in Brussels for the bloc's spring summit.

The leaders of the EU three big powers, namely Britain, France and Germany, are pushing the 28-member bloc to take tougher restrictive measures against Russia over the Ukraine crisis, according to media reports.

"We don't want to have an economic war, because who would be the victim?" said Swoboda. "Ukraine itself. Ukraine is depending on (Russian) gas, on oil, but not only on these issues."

"If we start economic sanctions, Russia will retaliate, and where is the end? We have an economic crisis. People want jobs. We want to export. So let's be reasonable," he added.

Swoboda urged the EU leaders to be wise to be calm, and to go for a political solution, because even though the EU adopted economic sanctions, "Crimea will not go back."




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