U.S. to impose sanctions on Russian Federation over nerve attack in UK

U.S. to impose sanctions on Russian Federation over nerve attack in UK

The Trump administration announced on Wednesday that it will impose new sanctions on Russia over the nerve-agent attack on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March.

FILE - A police officer stands guard outside of the home of former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal, in Salisbury, Britain, March 6, 2018.

The sanctions are created to target electronic devices and some large equipment, including aircraft gas turbine engines, with an exemption for equipment used for mutual U.S. -Russia space exploration.

But Congress has been pushing for such a decision and now the state department has confirmed Russia's actions contravened 1991 U.S. legislation on the use of chemical weapons.

The Russian Embassy in Washington said the "draconian" new sanctions against Russia weren't backed by any facts or evidence, noting that while the US said it has enough information to conclude that Russia is to blame, it refused to disclose what it has, saying the information is classified.

Peskov highlighted on Thursday what he called the "unpredictability of Russia's partners across the Atlantic.you can expect anything from Washington", he told CBS News partner network BBC News, calling the USA, "an unpredictable worldwide player".

"We consider the tying of new restrictions - which as previously we consider illegal - with the affair in Salisbury to be categorically unacceptable", Peskov told reporters during his daily telephone briefing.

"The US has unmasked itself as the mastermind behind the cheap show to stage the poisoning of the Skripals", Irina Yarovaya said today.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has signed off on a determination that Russian Federation violated worldwide law by poisoning the former spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter, Yulia, in March, the officials said.

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"So linking these events is unacceptable to us, and just as with previous USA sanctions we believe are absolutely illegal and against global law", Peskov told reporters. (Authorities believe a British woman's death was caused by accidental exposure to the nerve agent).

Acting in tandem with governments in Europe, the United States expelled 60 Russian diplomats it said were spies several weeks later.

The higher price of oil, however, has given Russia's government a large financial cushion to maintain public services and to assist business magnates targeted by US sanctions.

The action follows the US Treasury's imposition of sanctions in March against 19 Russian citizens and five entities for interfering in the 2016 US election - the toughest steps against Moscow since MR Trump took office.

The Russian economy is still reeling from worldwide sanctions imposed on Moscow in 2014 over its actions in Ukraine and a crash in oil prices the same year. With these sanctions, the exports will be presumptively denied.

Some former officials told The Post, however, that the order seemed more like a "a cover-your-behind exercise" for the administration than meant to seriously deter foreign powers.

Last week, a group of Democrat and Republican senators introduced a bill that would impose some of the toughest sanctions ever placed on modern Russian Federation.

"Sanctioning sovereign debt will be a last resort".

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