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22:29, 16 September 2014 Tuesday
13:34, 27 February 2012 Monday

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EU FMs meet for new sanctions on Syria
EU FMs meet for new sanctions on Syria
European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs, British, Catherine Ashton gives a press briefing prior to a EU foreign affairs council in Brussels, Belgium, 27 February.(EPA)

Diplomatic sources said that, during Monday's meeting, the EU would place a visa ban for seven Syrian ministers and freeze their wealth.

European Union (EU) foreign ministers have gathered in Brussels on Monday to discuss new sanctions on Syria, a country where the government continues to implement violence on its own people.

Speaking to reporters before entering Monday's meeting, EU High Representative for Foreign Policy, Catherine Ashton, said that they would continue to take new steps in order to put pressure on the Damascus regime to end violence.

British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, William Jefferson Hague, said that "with the new sanctions, we will increase diplomatic and economic pressure on the Damascus government".

Diplomatic sources said that, during Monday's meeting, the EU would place a visa ban for seven Syrian ministers and freeze their wealth.

EU's new sanctions are expected to target the ministries of health, education, communications and technology, oil and transportation and presidency.

On the other hand, the EU is expected to partially freeze the assets of the Syrian central bank, end the trade of gold and other valuable minerals between Syria and the EU and ban transportation of cargo planes to Syria.

The EU has already implemented certain sanctions against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and 100 close names. The EU in September stopped importing oil from Syria.

The Damascus administration continues to implement a policy of violence on its own people for the past 12 months. According to UN figures, more than 5,400 Syrians have been killed by Syrian government forces in the past one year.

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