The Russian leadership has again criticized the transit restrictions for the Baltic Sea exclave of Kaliningrad, which belongs to Moscow but lies between EU countries Poland and Lithuania, and threatened “practical” retaliatory measures. In a press briefing on Wednesday, Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova threatened that an answer would be “not in the diplomatic but in the practical sphere” if the EU did not lift its restrictions.

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According to statements by the Russian foreign politician Leonid Slutsky, Russia is considering, among other things, excluding Lithuania from a common, synchronously switched power grid.

The Baltic countries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are still connected to Russia and Belarus via the BRELL ring system, which dates back to Soviet times. Because they see this as a security risk, they want to be integrated into the European network by 2025 anyway, and according to Lithuania, earlier.

The Kremlin also spoke up again on Wednesday. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the transit restrictions contradict “the basic documents” of the EU-Russia partnership. The 1994 partnership agreement provides for free transit of goods, he said. A response is being prepared, he said. He did not give details of possible countermeasures and when.

Lithuania on Saturday banned the transit of goods on the EU sanctions list across its territory. According to Kaliningrad Governor Anton Alikhanov, the restrictions will affect 40 to 50 percent of transit between core Russia and Kaliningrad.