"Restrictive measures have been approved. They will take effect on Friday (December 19)," EU Foreign Ministry representative Maya Kotsiyanchich said.
Representatives of the Russian Foreign Ministry said that the sanctions against the Crimea were confrontational.
The new restrictions of the European Union against the Crimea are not included in basic packages of sanctions against Russia. The move came as a part of the EU strategy for non-recognition of Russia's reunification with the Crimea. Under the strategy, the European Union has banned issuing Schengen visas to residents of the Crimea with Russian passports. The EU has also banned exports of the Crimean goods that were not certified in Ukraine. To crown it all, Crimean ports and airport were closed for EU vessels and aircraft.
Earlier, sources from European diplomacy said that a new package of sanctions would target new investment in the Crimea, including the acquisition of companies, creation of joint ventures and increasing stakes in them. In particular, it was said that the sanctions would ban the participation of European companies in the development of oil and gas fields in the territorial waters of the Crimea, which the EU considers a part of Ukraine.
The European sanctions against the Crimea is an attempt to punish the residents of the peninsula for their choice in favor of Russia, officials with the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"We consider any form of discrimination of residents of the Crimean and Sevastopol politicized reasons for absolutely unacceptable, - the Russian diplomatic agency said. - In Brussels, they need already to realize that the Crimea and Sevastopol are an integral part of Russia. In this regard, we would like to remind the EU of our legal right to respond adequately to its so-called restrictive measures against all Russian citizens and legal entities."
Presidential candidate Ksenia Sobchak, who was accredited for the press conference by Vladimir Putin from Dozhd (Rain) television channel, asked Putin about competition at the coming election