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EU's Mogherini Sees Russia Sanctions Being Extended

European Union foreign-policy chief Federica Mogherini says she expects sanctions against Russia over its actions in Ukraine to be renewed in July.

"The heads of state and governments had required that the sanctions be lifted when the Minsk agreement is fully implemented," Mogherini said in an interview published on May 19 by Germany's Die Welt newspaper. "But, that's something that we haven't achieved yet."

The Minsk deal signed in February 2015 has helped reduce fighting between Ukrainian government forces and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine, but sporadic clashes have continued.

The conflict has killed more than 9,300 people since April 2014.

The EU imposed sanctions targeting Russia's oil, defense, and banking sectors in 2014, and they are due to expire at the end of July.

Some EU countries have suggested sanctions might be eased in an effort to defuse tensions with Moscow.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters