he European Union agreed Wednesday to a second extension of sanctions against Russian firms and individuals and Ukrainian separatists, for another six months, until March 2016. On the same day, the United States added 29 more individuals to its sanctions list against Russia, Reuters reported.
The 28-member EU agreed to the extension Wednesday and said it would sign off on it by mid-September,according to reports. The sanctions stem from Russia’s ongoing involvement in the conflict in Ukraine, which has taken the lives of over 6,700 and displaced over 1.4 million people since it started in April 2014. The previous sanctions extension was due to expire on Sept. 15. The sanctions target 150 people and 37 entities, making them subject to asset freezes and travel bans, according to the EU. Although EU countries have taken different stances on how to best end the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the sanctions extension shows a united front.
Russia’s biggest mobile phone operator MTS said on Friday it had teamed up with GoogleInc to help grow the use of mobile Internet and will get a share of the search site’s advertising revenues in Russia.
Russian intelligence services have recently recorded a rise in the number of Russian citizens recruited by the IS militants, who are rampaging through parts of Syria and Iraq. According to different estimates, there are currently from two to five thousand Russians fighting for the jihadists, head of the Anti-terrorist Center of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Andrey Novikov, told Interfax last month.