Russia will mirror any sanctions: deputy economy minister

A pro-Moscow billboard in Sevastopol, equating life in Ukrainian Crimea with life under fascism, urges a yes vote in the referendum on joining Russia that was set by Crimean legislators for March 16

(Reuters) – Russia will impose symmetrical sanctions if the United States and European Union impose their own, Deputy Economy Minister Alexei Likhachev said on Thursday.

“We are ready for any eventuality,” Likhachev told journalists. “We will mirror (any actions).”

He also said the ministry hoped that any sanctions would be political not economic. “One would like to wish that if the European Union decides to impose any sanctions they will not restrain business cooperation,” Likhachev said.