Parliament unites to condemn Putin's Aussie sanctions

AUSTRALIAN leaders on both sides of the political aisle have slammed Russian President Vladimir Putin's sanctions on Australian exports after the shooting down of MH17.

President Putin overnight ordered Russian authorities to impose sanctions on numerous countries which backed an Australian-led United Nations motion to investigate the MH17 downing.

The six-month sanctions on Australia could hit meat, dairy and livestock exports to the eastern European nation, to the tune of about $400 million a year.

Trade with Russia is currently worth about $900 million a year, according top the latest figures from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

In the wake of the MH17 shooting by Russian-linked rebel forces in the Ukraine, the United States, Europe and others imposed direct sanctions on Russia.

While Foreign Minister Julie Bishops said on Friday the sanctions were disappointing, Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce said the sanctions would hurt farmers.

However Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss, at the Brisbane Ekka on Friday, said it may not make a great deal of difference.

He said Russia had already placed sanctions on Australian meat exports, and rises of exports to other countries had picked up some of the slack.


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