Spanish FM to visit Moscow Sunday to discuss Libya, Ukraine, anti-Russia sanctions

Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo

© REUTERS/ Muhammad Hamed

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo is expected to arrive in Moscow on March 8 to discuss the Ukrainian crisis and anti-Russia sanctions imposed by the West with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Garcia-Margallo is also expected to meet with Russian Energy minister Alexander Novak and Spanish entrepreneurs working in Russia during his 2-day visit.

The Spanish side has repeatedly insisted on a peaceful settlement of the Ukrainian crisis, and spoke against arms supply to Kiev.

"The only solution to the crisis in Ukraine - is a political solution, in no event a military one," Garcia-Margallo said earlier this week.

With regard to the sanctions imposed by the European Union and its allies against Russia over the Ukrainian crisis, Spain says that now is a wrong time to implement additional restrictive measures.

Garcia-Margallo said that since the Minsk agreements on Ukrainian reconciliation came into force, it is necessary to give a chance for a peaceful dialogue. He added, however, that in case Minsk agreements are not adhered to, additional sanctions could be imposed against Moscow.

The European Union together with the United States have introduced several rounds of economic sanctions against Moscow, citing its alleged interfering in Ukraine's internal affairs and supporting eastern Ukrainian pro-independence militia.

The Kremlin has repeatedly said that it is not a party to the Ukrainian internal crisis, and called for a peaceful dialogue between the warring parties.

During the Garcia-Margallo's visit, the Spanish and the Russian foreign ministers are expected to focus also on the Libyan crisis, the situation in the Middle East, as well as humanitarian issues and cultural ties between the two countries.