West blocking Ukraine peace talks says Lavrov

STORY: "When Ukraine seemed to put forward a proposal two months ago on how to resolve this issue, we took these proposals as a basis for talks, but a day later, the West forbade Ukrainians from continuing with the negotiations process," he said in an interview with a Bosnian Serb television station.

Lavrov added that Western sanctions would have no effect on the country's oil exports and predicted a big jump in profits from energy shipments this year.

European Union leaders agreed an embargo on Russian crude oil imports that will take full effect by end-2022 - the bloc's toughest sanction on Moscow yet over its invasion of Ukraine.

The ban aims to halt 90% of Russia's crude imports into the 27-nation bloc by year-end.

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