Germany voices concern over U.S. sanctions against Russian Federation

02 August, 2017, 00:50 | Author: Dustin Murphy
  • US House of Representatives approves new 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 as a response to the new sanctions that were approved almost unanimously by both the House of Representatives and the Senate.

"Starting August 1, the use of all the storage facilities on Dorozhnaya Street in Moscow and the country house in Serebryany Bor will be suspended from use by the United States embassy", the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson by telephone that Russia was ready to normalise relations with the United States and to cooperate on major global issues. The US Embassy said Tefft had expressed his "strong disappointment and protest". Now the bill is waiting President Donald Trump's approval, who may either sign or veto it.

Trump hasn't threatened to reject the bill even though Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and other senior administration officials had objected to a mandated congressional review should the president attempt to ease or lift the sanctions on Russian Federation. House and Senate committees and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are examining possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russian Federation. They also created difficulties for Russian companies, especially the ones in the energy sector, in getting loans in the West.

Mr Trump's communications director Anthony Scaramucci suggested on Thursday that the president might veto the bill and "negotiate an even tougher deal against the Russians".

The Senate passed the sanctions bill 98-2, two days after the House of Representatives pushed the measure through by an overwhelming margin, 419-3.


"Because more than 1,000 workers - diplomats and support staff - were working and are still working in Russia, 755 must stop their activity in the Russian Federation", he said.

Russia will also "mirror" any further expulsions of Russian diplomats, the ministry added.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that he would retaliate if the bill against his country is signed into law.

In December, the outgoing Obama administration seized two Russian diplomatic compounds - one in NY and another in Maryland - at the same time as it expelled Russian diplomats.

Russian Senator Konstantin Kosachev said that Moscow's reaction is adequate, balanced and relevant to the current sorry state of bilateral relations.

He said more than 1,000 people were now employed at the Moscow embassy and three U.S. consulates in Russia, including both Americans and Russians hired to work in the diplomatic offices. The Senate passed the proposed sanctions, but it now falls to Trump for putting the sanctions in place with his signature.

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