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12 February, 2014 22:30   ▪  

Steven Pifer: I do favor targeted sanctions by the US and EU against Yanukovych's circle

Former US Ambassador to Ukraine Steven Pifer told in the interview to Deutsche Welle that the West should target Ukrainian oligarchs with sanctions.

“I do favor targeted sanctions by the United States and the European Union with two objectives. One is to make clear to those who might be involved in the use of force that there will be penalties. But I also believe that sanctions can be used in a positive way and that is to prod people in the inner circle around Yanukovych to encourage him to engage in a real dialogue and attempt to find a solution,” Pifer says.

He says that the inner circle around Yanukovych includes not only those who are in the government, but also businessmen. “Rinat Akhmetov, the wealthiest oligarch, has been fairly close to Mr. Yanukovych. I think it would be useful if Mr. Akhmetov was using his influence with President Yanukovych to encourage him to negotiate in a serious way to find a solution. And if there was some threat that there might be financial or travel sanctions on Mr. Akhmetov, that could be a useful leverage,” he claims.

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