Ns News Online Desk: Putin says sanctions harmful to those who impose them Russia ‘forced’ to launch ‘special operation’ in Ukraine -President Putin turns to the war in Ukraine. He says Russia’s decision to start it’s so called “special military operation” was difficult – but was “forced on us”.
Putin says it was aimed at protecting “our people” the people of Donbas – in eastern Ukraine, as he repeats his unfounded accusation that they were “being subjected to genocide”.
He adds “the West is continuing to pump Ukraine with weapons”, saying that “all the goals of the special operation will be achieved without any doubt”. Putin
He says the European Union could lose more than $400 billion (£326bn) because of sanctions on Russia.
Putin adds that the EU has lost its “political sovereignty” in its response to the war in Ukraine.
He says inflation is increasing in EU countries and adds that inequality will only increase as a result of the sanctions.
Putin says the real interests of people in Europe are being side-lined. Putin attacks Western ‘economic blitzkrieg’
More now from Russia’s President Putin, who’s speaking at an economic conference in St Petersburg.
He attacks sanctions imposed by the West following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, saying these are “mad and senseless”.
He says Western countries have failed to break Moscow down.
“The economic blitzkrieg against Russia had no chance to succeed from the very beginning,” he says. Putin speaking now after delay
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has started his speech at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum.
As we reported earlier, his speech was put back due to a cyber-attack at the venue, according to the Kremlin.
Putin hopes to increase gas flows via new routes
Vladimir Putin says Russia will develop as an open economy, and will never step along a path to isolation, despite the unprecedented sanctions imposed by the West following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.
Putin says Russia will keep dealing with Western companies and that he hopes gas flows will increase via new routes.
He adds that Russia will continue to expand economic cooperation “with those who want it”.
Putin implores Russian businesses to keep working in his country. “Invest here,” he urges – explaining that there is “huge potential” in Russia. “It’s safer in your own house,” he adds. ” “Those who didn’t want to listen to this have lost millions abroad.”
The president is speaking at an economic conference in St Petersburg.