EU EMERGENCY MEETING ON SITUATION IN UKRAINE

Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, has called for an emergency meeting of EU Foreign Ministers in Brussels on Thursday 29 January 2015 to discuss further potential sanctions against the Russian Federation following the recent increase in violence in Ukraine.

On 24 January 2015, an attack by separatist rebels in the southeastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol killed at least 30 civilians, with 107 injured. The escalation of violence prompted an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council on 26 January 2015.

The United States has also signalled that it is considering further sanctions against Russia. President Obama stated that the US is “deeply concerned about the latest break in the cease-fire and the aggression that these separatists – with Russian backing, Russian equipment, Russian financing, Russian training and Russian troops – are conducting.  And we will continue to take the approach that we’ve taken in the past, which is to ratchet up the pressure on Russia.” He added that the US will “look at all additional options that are available to us short of military confrontation and try to address this issue.”

 

 

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About Michael O'Kane

Michael O’Kane is a partner and Head of the Business Crime team at leading UK firm Peters & Peters. Described as ‘first-rate’ (Legal 500 2012), he “draws glowing praise from commentators” (Chambers 2013) for handling the international aspects of business crime, including sanctions, extradition and mutual legal assistance. Called to the Bar in 1992 and prior to joining Peters & Peters he was a senior specialist prosecutor at the Crown Prosecution Service Headquarters(CPS). At CPS HQ he was a key member of a small specialist unit responsible for the prosecution of serious and high profile fraud, terrorist and special interest criminal matters including the Stansted Airport Afghan hijacking and the prosecution of Paul Burrell (Princess Diana’s butler). Michael joined Peters & Peters in 2002. He became a partner in May 2004, and Head of the Business Crime team in May 2009. Since joining Peters & Peters, Michael has dealt with a wide range of business crime matters. He has particular expertise in international sanctions, criminal cartels, extradition, corruption, mutual legal assistance, and FSA investigations. Described as“ an influential practitioner in fraud and regulatory work, so much so that he is top of the referral lists of many City firms for independent advice for directors” (The Lawyer’s Hot 100 2009), he was recognised as one of the UK’s most innovative lawyers in the 2011 FT Innovative Lawyer Awards and included in the list of the UK's leading lawyers in 'The International Who's Who of Asset Recovery 2012. In 2012 he was the winner of the Global Competition Review Article of the Year. Michael regularly appears on television and radio to discuss his specialist areas and he is the author of the leading textbook on the UK Criminal Cartel Offence “The Law of Criminal Cartels-Practice and Procedure” (Oxford University Press 2009). Recent/Current Sanctions Work • Representing 109 individuals and 12 companies subject to designation by the European Council under targeted measures imposed against Zimbabwe. This is the largest and most complex collective challenge to a sanctions listing ever brought before the European Court. • Acting for a former Egyptian Minister and his UK resident wife, challenging their designation by the European Council of Ministers under targeted measures brought against former members of the Egyptian Government. • Advising a company accused in a UN investigation report to have breached UN sanctions imposed in relation to Somalia. • Advising a UK company in relation to ongoing commercial relationships with an Iranian company listed under both EU and UN sanctions. • Advising an individual in relation to a UK investigation for alleging breaching nuclear export controls.

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