Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday that sanctions imposed on Russia over the Ukraine crisis would have a boomerang effect on the West at same time as fighting in eastern Ukraine left at least 20 people dead, casting a shadow over Sunday’s presidential vote.
Speaking at an international business forum in St. Petersburg, Putin mostly addressed economic matters, including the signing of a massive gas deal with China earlier this week. He also criticized the situation in Ukraine, calling it for the first time a “full-scale civil war.”
Putin, however, promised to respect the result of Sunday’s presidential elections in Ukraine, a move which decreases the risk of more sanctions against Russia.
Russia will “respect the choice of the Ukrainian people” and will work with the new leadership, Putin said, adding Russia wants peace and order to be restored.
Read morePutin Calls Ukraine Crisis ‘Full-Scale Civil War’