Switzerland abandons neutrality to sanction Russia and Putin

The Swiss government will adopt EU sanctions imposed following the invasion of Ukraine and immediately freeze all assets belonging to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, he said. he announced Monday in a press release.
“We are in an extraordinary situation,” President Ignazio Cassis told reporters on Monday, according to Reuters.

The country will close its airspace to flights from Russia and impose entry bans on a number of people with a connection to Switzerland and close to the Russian president, the government has announced.

“Russia’s unprecedented military attack on a sovereign European country was the decisive factor in the Federal Council’s decision to change its previous stance on sanctions,” he added.

In retaliation, the Russian Air Transport Agency announced on Tuesday that it had closed its airspace to Switzerland.

Switzerland had faced growing pressure to join other Western powers in imposing sanctions on Russia.

European Commission spokesman Peter Stano said last week that the bloc expected Switzerland “to follow suit in standing up for the principles on which our communities and our countries are built”.

Switzerland has long sought to maintain its neutrality, and the Alpine country has hosted numerous peace talks and negotiations between geopolitical adversaries. It also has a banking sector that serves many of the wealthiest people in the world.


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