EU leaders press Russia, urge new investment

Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives for his annual press conference in Moscow on December 18, 2014European Union leaders urged Vladimir Putin to make a “radical change” in his stance on Ukraine Thursday as they boosted sanctions against Crimea despite fears of economic blowback from Russia’s spiralling financial crisis. The leaders at a summit in Brussels also called for the urgent launch of a huge 315-billion-euro ($380-billion) investment plan aimed at kickstarting Europe’s moribund economy, although there were no pledges of hard cash. Foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said that while the collapse of the ruble was “not good news” for Russia, the EU or the world, sanctions would continue until Moscow stopped backing rebels in eastern Ukraine.

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