Russia has threatened Lithuania with serious consequences if the Baltic country prevents it from exporting EU-sanctioned goods to the exclave of Kaliningrad by rail.
Nikolai Patrushev, Russia’s security council secretary and one of President Vladimir Putin’s closest confidants, said during a trip to Kaliningrad on Tuesday that Russia would “react to such hostile actions” after Lithuania began enforcing the sanctions.
Patrushev warned that “appropriate measures” would be “taken in the near future”, adding that “their consequences will have serious negative influence on the population of Lithuania”, according to the Interfax news agency.
Russia accused the EU of starting a “blockade” of Kaliningrad after Lithuania, which controls the only overland rail route linking the exclave to mainland Russia via Belarus, began restricting the transit of goods under EU sanctions over Russia’s war in Ukraine.
These include iron and steel, luxury goods and some other products banned in earlier sanctions packages, which amount to a quarter of total Russian rail supplies to Kaliningrad.