Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano says Russia must not be “pushed into a corner” over Syria, as the Group of Seven ignored calls by Britain and the US for new sanctions on Moscow over its support of President Bashar al-Assad.
Alfano said there was “no consensus” among G7 countries for new sanctions after the idea was raised at a meeting in Lucca by British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. He added that isolating Russia “would be wrong.”
Boris Johnson said there could still be new sanctions imposed on Russian military officers over their support for the Syrian government, though his call for it was ignored.
Johnson also said he agreed with other EU leaders that Russia needed to be part of the solution in Syria, but said the country must abandon its support for President Assad to do so.
The G7 has called for an independent international investigation into last week’s chemical attack in Syria, and Johnson said depending on what it finds “those responsible for unleashing those chemical weapons” could face sanctions — including Russian officers.