BRUSSELS -- European Union ambassadors have agreed to impose sanctions on four additional Russian individuals and three Russian entities after the revelation earlier this month that four gas turbines from the German company Siemens had been "illegally diverted" from Russia to the annexed Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea, sources told RFE/RL on July 26.
The European Union ambassadors backed a push by Germany for the additions to the EU's existing sanctions list, according to two officials who are familiar with the matter but were not authorized to speak publicly about the decision.
The identities of the Russian individuals and entities have not been released, but a person familiar with the matter told RFE/RL that they are likely to include Russian firms and corporate leaders responsible for transferring the Siemens turbines from Russia to Russia-occupied Crimea.
Crimea has been subjected to EU sanctions on energy technology since Russian military forces seized control of the Ukrainian region in March 2014 and the Kremlin staged a referendum that has been deemed as illegitimate by most countries in the world.
The EU has 150 people and 37 entities on a current sanctions list that has been in place since 2014. The list was renewed in March 2017 for six months and is expected to be extended again in September.
Siemens has said the turbines were "illegally" diverted "against our will" to Crimea and that it was cutting some of its ties to Russia following reports of the illegal shipments.
It said the turbines originally had been sold for use at the Taman power plant in southern Russia.
Siemens on July 21 said it would halt deliveries of power-generation equipment under its existing contracts with Russia's state-controlled entities "for the time being" in response to the revelations.
With reporting by AFP