Imposing more sanctions against Russia over the Kerch Strait incident would be counterproductive amid the existing high level of tension, the German Ambassador to Ukraine, Ernst Wolfgang Reichel, has said. The diplomat explained that Berlin is rejecting the idea of escalating anti-Russian sanctions pressure after the incident, which involved Ukrainian and Russian military boats in the Black Sea. “We believe our main goal now is to prevent further escalation of this conflict, to ensure it does not spiral out of control. This is why many [EU] member states, including us, believe it would have been counterproductive to raise tensions by adding more sanctions now, when the level of tension is already quite high,” Reichel said. He made the remark during a round table discussion in response to a question about what should be expected from a European Council meeting on the issue next week.

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