07/29/2014, 00.00
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As US and EU prepare sanctions against Russia, Moscow gets ready to respond

New sanctions will affect defence, finance and energy. Moscow is set to boycott US chickens and EU fruit. Fighting continues for a third day near the MH17 flight crash site. Australian and Dutch experts are unable to recover the remains of the victims.

Moscow (AsiaNews) - The United States and the European Union are preparing a new round of sanctions against Russia to slam its support for separatist rebels in the Ukraine. For its part, Russia is trying to limit the impact of the new restrictions and is planning to boycott US products and those of its allies.

New US-EU sanctions will target "key areas" of the Russian economy - finance, defence and energy - but the details are not yet forthcoming. It is certain that they will be implemented by the end of the week.

For his part, President Vladimir Putin said that Russia would try to replace imports in the defence industry

Russia also signalled possible retaliation, announcing yesterday that it may ban imports of chicken from the United States and fruit from Europe because of concern about contamination. Russia accounted for about 7 per cent of US poultry exports.

The United States is likely to deny Russian access to oil-production equipment that could be used in the Arctic and deep waters, and add more banks and energy companies to the list of those banned from US financing,

Meanwhile, for a third day in a row, Dutch experts and Australian police have been unable to reach the location where MH17 flight crashed killing almost 300 people.

The bodies of most victims have been were recovered and sent to Holland, but the remains of dozens are still missing.

Despite assurances from the Ukrainian side and the rebels, experts have not been able to get close to the crash site because of fighting in the area.

The United States accuses the rebels and Russia of shooting down the Malaysian Airlines passenger plane; for their part, rebels deny even having a missile system.

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