EU identifies 5 Russian banks it is sanctioning

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Associated Press

Posted on July 31, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Updated Thursday, Jul 31 at 12:02 PM

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union has revealed the names of five Russian banks it is sanctioning over what the 28-nation bloc decries as Moscow's meddling in Ukraine.

The sanctions limit access to European capital markets for the banks, in which the Russian state holds a majority stake. The lenders are Russia's largest bank, Sberbank, Gazprombank, Rosselkhozbank, VEB and VTB bank.

The sanctions were first announced Tuesday, but the names of the targeted firms were only released Thursday.

The regulation says it will be "prohibited to directly or indirectly purchase, sell, provide brokering or assistance in the issuance" of debt instruments with a maturity of over 90 days.

Russia's state-owned banks last year issued debt worth 15.8 billion euros. About half of that, or 7.5 billion euros, was placed on European markets.

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