Polish PM urges EU sanctions on Ukraine’s government
February 20, 2014
Poland's PM Donald Tusk
Poland's Prime Minister Donald Tusk will press European Union leaders to impose sanctions on the persons responsible for bloodshed in Ukraine, Tusk said in the parliament on Wednesday morning, pointing to Ukrainian authorities.
“I will hold talks with the leaders of the biggest EU countries and institutions, and persuade them to impose sanctions – personal and financial,” Tusk told a special meeting of the Polish parliament.
"I hope that such a stance from Poland will help the EU as a whole in taking fast decisions."
Tusk said Ukraine may be in the “first hours” of a civil war and urged the 28-member bloc to come up with a “realistic and thought-out” plan to deal with a protracted crisis on its southeastern border.
Violent clashes in Kiev and the storming of the opposition protest camp at Maidan, or Independence Square in Kiev by Ukrainian police and special forces have so far claimed 26 lives. Hundreds of people were wounded after Ukraine's president Viktor Yanukovych ordered armed riot police to clear central Kiev of demonstrators.
Situation in the Ukraine escalated as of Tuesday morning after the parliamentary speaker refused to place in the parliamentary agenda an item on returning to the provisions of the 1996 constitution limiting the prerogatives of the president, one of the postulates of the opposition.
Sanctions from the European Union should target Yanukovych and avoid hurting ordinary citizens, Tusk also said.
The Polish PM had earlier said that EU sanctions against Ukrainian leaders held responsible for the country's situation should be "painful".
"This shouldn't be just a demonstration. The sanctions should be really painful for the Ukrainian authorities to make them see that this is Europe's final argument. As the European Union we don't have many arguments left", Tusk said.
Measures against the regime could be imposed in days, he added.