PARIS – France’s lower house of parliament voted in favour of lifting European Union sanctions against Russia on Thursday, in a non-binding vote that went against the Socialist government’s recommendation.
French deputies voted by 55-44 in favour of the resolution to lift the sanctions slapped on Moscow by the 28-member EU after Russia annexed Crimea and tension escalated with Ukraine. Former president Nicolas Sarkozy’s Republicans party, as well as centre-right and far-left groups voted for lifting the sanctions. The Socialists and Greens voted against the resolution put forward by conservative lawmaker Thierry Mariani. “(The sanctions are) totally ineffective today to solve this international crisis and are dangerous for France’s interests,” Mariani, who represents French residents in eastern Europe and Russia, said.