The Kremlin said on Tuesday that efforts to "punish" Russia are futile, making clear reference to the Western sanctions on the nation, according to local media.
European countries that support Ukraine will sooner or later begin to wonder whether President Vladimir Zelenskyy is doing things correctly, said Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, as quoted by state-run news agency TASS.
Targeting the European countries that have slapped a series of sanctions on Moscow since Russia launched its war on Ukraine on Feb. 24, he said: “The countries themselves are paying the bill, and the citizens are paying the bill.”
“And sooner or later these countries will also begin to wonder, ‘Is Zelenskyy doing everything right, why do our citizens have to pay for his whims?’ So the Ukrainian side should be aware of this,” Peskov said in response to Zelenskyy’s interview with The Washington Post urging a ban on Russian tourism in Western countries.
The EU has slapped six sets of sanctions against Moscow since the beginning of Russia's war on Ukraine on Feb. 24.
The packages target, among others, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and include a ban on oil and coal imports and exports of luxury goods. Also, they exclude Russian and Belarusian banks from using the international SWIFT system.
At least 5,401 civilians have been killed and 7,466 injured since the war began on Feb. 24, according to UN estimates. The true toll is believed to be much higher.