VIENNA — Russian President Vladimir Putin says Western sanctions against Russia haven't worked and both Moscow and the West would benefit from lifting them.
Putin, speaking on a visit to Austria on Tuesday, said the restrictions are "harmful for everyone — those who initiated them and those who are targeted by them."
The United States, the European Union and other Western allies introduced a slew of sanctions against Moscow over its 2014 annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula and for its support for separatists in eastern Ukraine.
Coupled with a drop in oil prices, the sanctions contributed to Russia's two-year recession.
The Russian economy has rebounded, however, and Putin emphasized that lifting the sanctions would answer common interests. He said both Russia and the EU would benefit from resuming full-scale cooperation.