The EU will have to introduce measures against imports of Russian oil and even gas at some point to keep maximum pressure on the Kremlin, said the EU Council president on Wednesday.
“We must do everything to make these atrocities stop. We are toughening our sanctions to keep maximum pressure on the Kremlin,” said EU Council President Charles Michel told the EU Parliament.
“The new package includes a ban on coal imports. I think that measures on oil and even gas will also be needed sooner or later,” Michel added.
He said Russia committed crimes against humanity in the Ukrainian city of Bucha.
“We express our outrage at crimes against humanity, against innocent civilians in Bucha and many other cities. Yet more proof that Russian brutality against the people of Ukraine has no limits,” he said, adding that there is more proof of “war crimes” and “executions.”
“This is not a special operation. These are war crimes and we, the EU, will not turn our backs. We look reality straight in the eye,” he added.
Underlining that there will be “severe consequences for all those responsible”, he said they will do anything to bring the perpetrators to international justice.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Moscow are facing even more vehement criticism from the international community after Ukraine accused Russian forces of committing “genocide” and “war crimes” in Bucha, a town near the capital Kyiv.
Russia has rejected the allegations as a “fake news attack,” arguing that images of dead bodies and footage of slain civilians that have drawn global outrage were staged after Russian forces withdrew from the city.
The Russia-Ukraine war, which started on Feb. 24, has drawn international outrage, with the EU, US, and Britain, among others, implementing tough financial sanctions on Moscow.