Fury was mounting today over the EU’s weak and divided attempts to sanction Russia over the invasion of Ukraine, as it was revealed the Italian PM demanded and got an exemption for his country’s luxury goods industry .
Mario Draghi was accused of prioritising posh shoes over punishing Putin as EU nations ‘disgraced themselves’ with a failure to take a hardline approach to sanctions against Russia.
They were accused of frustrating British and American efforts to kick Russia out of the world’s biggest financial payments system.
In a call with G7 leaders yesterday, Boris Johnson pressed the case for suspending Russia from Swift, which is used to conduct about half of its international trade.
But the move was kicked into the long grass because of opposition from a number of EU countries, US president Joe Biden suggested.
Sources told the Telegraph today that Draghi won the exemption for Italian luxury goods like shoes and designer clothes, saying: ‘Apparently selling Gucci loafers to oligarchs is more of a priority than hitting back at Putin.’
Polish politician Donald Tusk, who grew up behind the Iron Curtain, lashed out at Germany, Hungary and Italy for blocking Brussels from taking a hardline approach to Putin.