The European Union on Monday summoned the highest-ranking Russian diplomat in Brussels in a coordinated action with Member States to condemn and reject the "illegal annexation" of Ukrainian territory, EU Foreign Affairs Spokesman Peter Stano told French news agency AFP.
EU countries began calling up Russian diplomats on Friday after Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the annexation of four Ukrainian regions occupied by his troops since the February invasion. Belgium did so on Friday. Italy and Austria followed suit on Monday.
EU leaders insisted they will "never" recognise Moscow's "illegal annexation," and the 27 are finalising new sanctions.
The annexations came on the heels of referenda, widely described as a "sham" and "illegal," held in the occupied Ukrainian regions.
EU diplomats, meanwhile, are trying to allay objections from several member states, including Hungary and Greece, to putting a price cap on Russian oil sold globally.