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Russia Says Will Retaliate Against US Sanctions
Russia Says Will Retaliate Against US Sanctions

Russia Says Will Retaliate Against US Sanctions

Russia Says Will Retaliate Against US Sanctions

Russia threatened to retaliate against new sanctions passed by the US House of Representatives, saying they made it all but impossible to achieve the Trump administration’s goal of improved relations.

The measures push US-Russia ties into uncharted territory and “don’t leave room for the normalization of relations” in the foreseeable future, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Wednesday, according to the Interfax news service, Bloomberg reported.

Hope “is dying” for improved relations because the scale of “the anti-Russian consensus in Congress makes dialogue impossible and for a long time,” Konstantin Kosachyov, chairman of the international affairs committee in Russia’s upper house of parliament, said on Facebook. Russia should prepare a response to the sanctions that’s “painful for the Americans”, he said.

Draft new US sanctions against Russia will hurt the powers of US President Donald Trump and the European Union’s energy security more than Russia’s economy, Interfax news agency cited Russian Economy Minister Maxim Oreshkin as saying on Wednesday.

Oreshkin also said the new US sanctions would have no significant influence on the ruble exchange rate, the agency reported.

The bill passed by a vote of 419-3 on Tuesday strengthens sanctions against Russia less than three weeks after President Donald Trump and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin held their first official meeting at the Group of 20 summit. The measure, which now goes to the senate, requires Trump to seek congressional approval before easing sanctions imposed under the Obama administration for Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential elections and its support for separatists in Ukraine. The White House has sent mixed signals about whether Trump will sign the bill.

Russia has prepared “economic and political measures that will be adopted if the senate and Trump support the bill,” said Vladimir Dzhabarov, deputy chairman of the international affairs committee in the upper house, the RIA Novosti news service reported. Relations with the US “are at such a low level that we have nothing to lose” by retaliating, he said.

 

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