A top Russian official has described Lithuania’s announcement to ban the transit of European Union-sanctioned materials to Russia through Kaliningrad -- Russia’s enclave in the EU -- as “hostile” and promised retaliation.
As reported by the Ria Novosti state-owned news agency, Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, said: “Russia will certainly respond to such hostile actions. Measures are being worked out in an interdepartmental format and will be taken in the near future."
Their consequences will have a serious negative impact on the Lithuanian population," he added.
Patrushev arrived in Kaliningrad, which is sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania on the Baltic coast, on Tuesday to meet with its governor, Anton Alikhanov.
Lithuanian Railways, the state-owned railway company, had notified Russia that starting midnight on June 18, transit trains with goods subject to EU sanctions would no longer be allowed to pass through, Alikhanov said on his telegram channel Friday.
Included on the list of banned goods published by Kaliningrad's Ministry of Economic Development are industrial equipment, machine tools, and machines for production and building materials, as well as various luxury goods, works of art and antiques and golf equipment, according to Russian state news agency TASS.
Meanwhile, the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted that the transit of passengers and non-sanctioned goods continues uninterrupted, that the country has not imposed any unilateral, individual or additional restrictions, and that it is acting fully in accordance with EU law.