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Putin Responds To Sanctions Against Russia With Expulsion Of US Diplomatic Staff

31 July 2017

Other potential retaliation, according to Kommersant, includes reducing the number of American staff allowed to work at the USA embassy in Moscow, voting against the United States on the UN Security Council (particularly on North Korea-related issues), seizing assets of U.S. companies operating in Russian Federation, and placing restrictions on the operations of major U.S. companies, from Coca-Cola to Google.

The foreign ministry's statement opens, "On July 27, the U.S. Congress passed a new bill on tougher anti-Russia sanctions".

Ryabkov's comments came after Moscow ordered the United States on Friday to cut hundreds of diplomatic staff and said it would seize two USA diplomatic properties. Not waiting to see if the president signs them into law, Russian Federation has taken retaliatory action against USA diplomats on its soil, which is why we've called Shaun Walker, Moscow correspondent for The Guardian, who joins us by Skype.

Moscow's retaliation, announced by the Foreign Ministry on Friday, had echoes of the Cold War.

Still, signing a bill that penalizes Russia's election interference marks a significant shift for Trump. The order came as a response to new sanctions approved by the U.S. Congress and sent to U.S. President Donald Trump to be signed into law.

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Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said that if the United States tries to adopt any additional unilateral measures against Russia as part of its "anti-Russian frenzy", Moscow's reaction will follow.

And the Trump administration itself is reserving its right to veto the legislation or pursue a different approach.

Lavrov added, however, that Moscow was ready to "normalize the bilateral ties with the US and cooperate on important worldwide issues".

The swift and almost unanimous passage of this bill is a stinging rebuke to President Trump, who has shown interest in scaling back sanctions on Russian Federation and sought to block passage of the measure.

"We were waiting for quite a long time that maybe something would change for the better, were holding out hope that the situation would change somehow".

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U.S. President Donald Trump intends to sign a bill sanctioning North Korea for its nuclear and missile programs, the White House said Friday, after the communist country launched another intercontinental ballistic missile.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders says in a statement that Trump read early drafts of the bill and "negotiated regarding critical elements of it". At the time, Russia did not mount a proportional response, and a Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said Putin was "in no rush to make a decision".

The United States-Russia relationship has become increasingly strained in the wake of the USA presidential election.

Trump also tweeted early last Saturday, saying "Russia was against Trump in the 2016 election" and linking to a news story from Fox and Friends.

But a State Department official called Russia's action "a regrettable and uncalled-for act". Lawmakers also tied the Russian Federation sanctions to separate measures targeting Iran and North Korea in a bid to make it more hard for Trump to veto the measure.

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Russia also said Friday that it's seizing two US diplomatic properties, much like the USA shut down two Russian diplomatic compounds under the Obama Administration.

Putin Responds To Sanctions Against Russia With Expulsion Of US Diplomatic Staff