Australian prime minister dubs Russia 'a bully,' threatens sanctions over Russian food ban

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Australia's prime minister has dubbed Russia "a bully" and threatened stronger sanctions against the country following Russia's ban on most Western food imports.

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday banned most food imports from the West in retaliation for sanctions imposed on his country related to the crisis in Ukraine.

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Friday said the ban would have a relatively small impact on Australia. And he warned Putin to call off the thousands of Russian troops that have amassed at the Ukrainian border.

Abbott said if Putin wants to avoid becoming an international outcast, he must pull Russian troops back.

Australia was among several countries that slapped sanctions on Russia amid accusations it has supplied weapons to pro-Moscow separatists in eastern Ukraine.