(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) Western officials are preparing to punish Russia and provide more support for Ukraine's new pro-Europe government as the crisis in Crimea escalates.
The U.S., U.K. and other European countries were meeting in London to prepare a list of Russians who would face a travel ban and have their assets frozen unless Moscow talks to Ukraine about resolving a military standoff in its Black Sea region, CNN reported. European leaders, including U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, said the window for diplomacy was closing fast as Crimea prepares to hold a referendum on joining Russia on Sunda
The West says the planned vote is illegal and won't be recognized by the international communit
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius tweeted that sanctions could come as early as this week, although the European Union may want to wait until all 28 foreign ministers meet in Brussels on Monday before taking a final decisio
The EU has frozen the assets of 18 people linked to the former Ukrainian government, including ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, who has fled to Russi
President Obama signed an executive order last week authorizing the freezing of U.S.-held assets owned by people responsible for destabilizing Ukrain
The U.S. has already imposed travel restrictions on some Russians and Ukrainians, according to senior administration official
Western governments have dropped talks with Russia in other areas, and suspended preparations for the G8 summit in Sochi due later this year.