February 27 (SeeNews) - The European Union will finance the purchase and delivery of weapons to Ukraine, will close its airspace for Russian aircraft and will ban Russian media spreading disinformation, European Commission (EC) president Ursula von der Leyen said on Sunday.
"For the first time ever, the European Union will finance the purchase and delivery of weapons and other equipment to a country that is under attack. This is a watershed moment," Von der Leyen said during a live-streamed press conference announcing further measures to respond to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The EU will also prohibit all Russian-owned, Russian registered or Russian-controlled aircraft to land in, take off or overfly its territory.
"This will apply to any plane owned, chartered or otherwise controlled by a Russian legal or natural person. So let me be very clear. Our airspace will be closed to every Russian plane – and that includes the private jets of oligarchs," Von der Leyen said.
The EU will also ban state-owned Russian media in another unprecedented step.
"We will ban in the EU the Kremlin's media machine. The state-owned Russia Today and Sputnik, as well as their subsidiaries will no longer be able to spread their lies to justify Putin's war and to saw division in our Union," Von der Leyen said.
The EU is also introducing restrictive measures against Belarus.
"This will stop their exports of products from mineral fuels to tobacco, wood and timber, cement, iron and steel. We will also extend to Belarus the export restrictions we introduced on dual-use goods for Russia. This will also avoid any risks of circumvention of our measures against Russia.," EC president said.
The new measures come on top of the EU's decision announced by Von der Leyen on Saturday to exclude certain Russian banks from the SWIFT system.