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WARSAW: President Andrzej Duda said on Saturday that Poland saw a need to maintain Western sanctions against Russia over its 2014 annexation of the Crimea region from Ukraine.

He also said Ukraine should have closer relations with the European Union and the NATO military alliance.

The EU and the United States have both imposed sanctions on Russia over its role in the Ukraine conflict.

US President Donald Trump has said it would be appropriate to have Russia rejoin what used to be the G8 group of advanced economies, from which Russia was excluded in 2014 over Crimea's annexation and for backing pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine.

But the European Council president on Aug. 24 rebuffed Trump's suggestion, saying there were even more reasons than before for keeping Moscow out.

Copyright Reuters, 2019