BRUSSELS, March 21 (Xinhua) -- Leaders of the European Union (EU) have decided to expand its sanctions against Russia by adding 12 more names on the blacklist with travel ban and assets freeze while canceling the EU-Russia summit, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said Friday.
The decision was made by the leaders of the 28 EU member states who gathered in Brussels for the bloc's spring summit, used to be focused on economic issues but eclipsed by the Ukraine crisis.
The EU did not publish the 12 additional person's name immediately, but Van Rompuy told a post-summit press conference that some of them are high ranking Russian officials.
Van Rompuy said if Russia takes any further step to destabilize Ukraine will have far-reaching consequences.
European Commission (EC) President Jose Manuel Barroso told reporters that the EC has been mandated by the member states to prepare targeted measures on Russia and the impact assessment of further sanctions against the country.
"We have been already working on this of course, and we are looking at broader areas that could have far-reaching consequences for the relations between European Union and Russia," said Barroso.
"So, it's a broad range of economic areas where we are in fact preparing possible targeted measures," he added.
Van Rompuy said that the EU will assess the salutation including any action and incident for triggering the targeted measures.
Facing sanctions from the West, Russia took a tit-for-tat response.
On Thursday, Russia barred a list of U.S. politicians from entering the country as a tit-for-tat move over Washington's sanctions.
The list came three days after the United States imposed sanctions against at least seven senior Russian state officials and members of the parliament over Moscow's recognition of Crimea's Sunday referendum, where joining Russia received a landslide support from the Crimean population.