The Treasury Department issued a new round of sanctions on dozens of Russian businessmen and senior government officials, as well as numerous companies, which include the owners of aluminum and gold production companies, together with Russia’s Gazprom, and a Russian bank.
The motivation for these new sanctions is declared to be Russia’s “malign activity”, with Washington citing Russian policies relevant to the Ukraine and Syria, as well as Russia’s alleged meddling with Western democracies. The new sanctions are the harshest to be issued by the US since the 2014 annexation of Crimea.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry has issued a statement saying that Russia “will provide a harsh response to new US sanctions or any future hostile move against Russia.” Sputnik International reports:
Russia’s Foreign Ministry stated Friday that it “will provide a harsh response to new US sanctions or any future hostile move against Russia.”
The ministry’s message to the administration of US President Donald Trump added that Russia wouldn’t “be spoken to in the language of sanctions” and warned that thousands of US jobs depend on Russian firms hit by that latest wave of penalties.
“Of course, we will not leave the current and any future anti-Russian attack without a harsh response,” the ministry’s press service said in a statement. “However, we would like, first of all, to advise Washington to get rid of illusions that we can be spoken to in the language of sanctions.”
“By continuously using sanctions, including for removing rivals from foreign markets with the use of such administrative measures, Washington practically becomes an opponent of the market economy and fair competition,” the statement noted.
As US democracy is “degrading,” Washington is scrambling to “ensure the global hegemony of the United States by all means, including through pressure on countries that have an independent voice, unlike Washington’s allies in NATO,” the ministry alleged. However, “no pressure will make Russia swerve off its path.”
Prior to the ministry’s comments, the Russian embassy in the United States remarked that the sanctions would represent another blow to US-Russia relations.
“Washington again struck US-Russia relations,” the Russian embassy’s statement read. “Now, the captains of Russian businesses who refused to play by Washington’s rules got targeted by the sanctions.”
The subjects of these sanctions will have any assets that they own or control in the US frozen, and American citizens will be denied the right to do business with them. The sanctions come on the heels of a decision to expel dozens of Russian diplomats from US soil.