Russian PM strongly warns U.S. against ramping up sanctions

Russian PM strongly warns U.S. against ramping up sanctions

The move could cut off hundreds of millions of dollars worth of exports to Russian Federation, said a senior State Department official on condition of anonymity.

Medvedev warned the USA that such a move would cross a red line and would warrant a Russian response by economic, political or "other means" he did not specify. "If a kind of prohibition of bank activities or using this or that currency followed, this can be called, absolutely directly, this is a declaration of economic war".

Russian Federation warned the United States on Friday it would regard any US move to curb the activities of its banks as a "declaration of economic war" and would retaliate, as new sanctions took their toll on the ruble and USA lawmakers threatened more.

"The Russian side will start examining response measures to the new unfriendly move of Washington", Zakharova said.

Zakharova described the new sanctions as an "unfriendly act" and accused the US of trying to "demonize" Russian Federation.

Under U.S. law, the Trump administration is required to impose new sanctions when governments are determined to have used chemical or biological weapons.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov says new sanctions by the U.S.

The full U.S. Congress will not be back in Washington until September, and the Reuters news agency cited congressional aides as saying they do not expect the measure to pass in its entirety.

The Guardian on Monday reported that London is preparing to ask Moscow to extradite two Russian citizens suspected of carrying out the Salisbury nerve agent attack in March.

"Once again we deny in the strongest terms the accusations about the possible connection of the Russian state to what happened in Salisbury".

Medvedev pointed at US efforts to block the planned construction of a new Russian natural gas pipeline to Germany in order to encourage the sales of American liquefied natural gas to Europe as an example of "unfair competition".

A second set of potentially more serious measures will be introduced only if Moscow fails to provide reliable assurances it will no longer use chemical weapons and blocks on-site inspections.

The US State Department said on Wednesday that Washington will impose new sanctions on Russian Federation over the alleged poison attack on Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury in March.

The surprise sanctions, in line with United States law that obliges action if chemical or biological weapons have been used, saw the value of Russia's rouble plunge to a two-year low.

Russian Federation has repeatedly denied responsibility for the attack, and Russia's embassy in Washington said in a statement that Washington's findings against it in the case were not backed by evidence. "Russian Federation did not have and does not have anything to do with the use of chemical weapons", Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in a conference call with reporters on Thursday.

Trump has repeatedly come under fire from lawmakers, including from his own Republican Party, for his conciliatory statements on Russian Federation, particularly at his joint news conference with Putin at their summit in Helsinki last month where he appeared to doubt USA intelligence conclusions that Russian Federation intervened in the 2016 election.

In March, the Trump administration ordered 60 Russian diplomats - all of whom it said were spies - to leave the United States and closed down Russia's consulate in Seattle in response to the Skripal case.

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