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Our response will cripple the West, warns Moscow

On Wednesday, Russia warned the West that it was planning a broad response to sanctions that would be swift and felt in the most sensitive areas of the West.

The news: Following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, the West imposed crippling sanctions on almost the entire Russian financial and corporate system, causing Russia’s economy to suffer its worst crisis since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.

  • The director of the foreign ministry’s department for economic cooperation, Dmitry Birichevsky, was quoted by the RIA news agency as saying, “Russia’s reaction will be swift, thoughtful, and sensitive for those it addresses.”
  • In retaliation for the invasion, US President Joe Biden imposed an immediate ban on Russian oil and other energy imports on Tuesday.
  • Russia warned earlier this week that if the United States and the European Union banned Russian crude imports, oil prices could soar to over $300 per barrel.

What’s going on: After the US expanded the NATO military alliance to Russia’s borders and supported pro-Western leaders in Kyiv, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the “special military operation” is necessary to ensure Russian security.

  • Ukraine claims to be fighting for its survival, and the Russian invasion has been condemned by the US and its European and Asian allies.
  • China, the world’s second largest economy, has urged restraint, but President Xi Jinping has warned that sanctions will stifle global growth.

What are they saying: According to Russia, Europe consumes roughly 500 million tonnes of oil per year. Around 30 per cent of that, or 150 million tonnes, comes from Russia, along with 80 million tonnes of petrochemicals.

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