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EU Agrees New Sanctions Against Syria

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad

European Union nations have agreed to impose new sanctions targeting the Syrian regime over the continuing violence in the country.

Diplomats said EU foreign ministers meeting in Luxembourg have agreed to ban exports to Syria of luxury goods and items that could be used for the repression of protesters.

The measures were imposed despite the cease-fire which formally came into effect in Syria 10 days ago as part of UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan's plan to halt the bloodshed and begin a political dialogue between President Bashar al-Assad and opponents.

The UN estimates that more than 9,000 people have been killed since protests against Assad's regime began in March 2011.

Previous EU sanctions included asset freezes and travel bans on more than 120 individuals, including Assad.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters