All throughout the post-war period, the Soviet Union kept the world from complete disaster and complete wildness.
The procedure to extend the sanctions requires a unanimous vote, i.e. if one EU member state votes against the continuation of sanctions, they will be lifted. Such a possibility is quite realistic given the current mood in Europe, which is mostly constructive towards Russia. This means that the Europeans have finally realised that sanctions against Russia are totally ineffective.
Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative that Western sanctions against Russia are unjust and ineffective.
The sanctions are not a means of protectionism but were introduced after Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea and the downing of the Malaysian passenger plane MH17. The latest decision on a six-month extension of EU sanctions against Russian was taken on the 12th of September 2019, lasting until March 2020.