French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire on Tuesday referred to as on the EU to prioritize a Russian oil embargo fairly than a ban on fuel, whereas acknowledging that not all of the bloc’s international locations had been on board with the transfer.
“We are trying to convince our European partners to stop importing oil from Russia,” Le Maire informed French radio Europe 1. “What has been the primary source of currency for [Russian President] Vladimir Putin for several years? It is not gas. It is oil.”
The feedback got here as Russia launched a renewed offensive in Ukraine on Monday, in what Kyiv says is a part of a plan to grab everything of the nation’s jap Donbas area.
Le Maire stated the renewed assaults have elevated the urgency of weaning Europe off its dependency on Russian power, whereas admitting some EU international locations, which he didn’t title, weren’t prepared to take action.
“We know very well that if we are not there today, it is not because France does not want it, it is because some European partners are still hesitant,” Le Maire stated, referring to an EU ban on Russian oil.
While Le Maire did not specify which “European partners” had been standing in the way in which, Germany is thought to be immune to a Russian oil embargo. Le Maire made an analogous name earlier this month.
Western leaders together with U.S. President Joe Biden, in addition to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council chief Charles Michel, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and the leaders of Germany, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, Poland, Romania and Canada are anticipated to carry a videoconference name this afternoon to debate the scenario in Ukraine.