Russian Federation sanctions will not affect Trump-Putin meeting plans

Randal Sanchez
April 8, 2018

Ty Cobb, a White House lawyer handling the Russian Federation probe, and Jay Sekulow, President Trump's personal attorney, declined to comment.

"We will not let the current attack, or any new anti-Russian attack, go without a tough response", Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement, after the USA sanctions which also target 12 companies owned by the oligarchs, 17 senior Russian officials and a state-owned arms export company.

Aluminum magnate Oleg Deripaska, who owns property in the United Kingdom, is accused by the White House of "directly or indirectly" acting on behalf of the Kremlin, along with six other tycoons, 17 officials and a dozen companies, including the state-run bank VTB.

As a result of the punishment, all assets of the designated persons and entities that are subject to USA jurisdiction are frozen, and US persons are generally prohibited from dealing with them.

The state-owned Russian weapons trading company, Rosoboronexport and Russian Financial Corporation Bank were also targeted under new sanctions.

The assets of all 24 people from Russian Federation and 15 various organizations that fall under the US sanctions and under US jurisdiction have been blocked, and American entities are banned from dealing with them, according to the US Treasury Department.

Sarah Sanders, the White House press secretary, said this week that talks were continuing between Trump and his lawyers about a possible interview with Mueller.

He said that Trump's attorneys are correct in trying to protect the president from a potential "perjury trap", but added that it may be wise for the New Yorker to go ahead with any interview so as not to embroil him in grand jury case over a subpoena. "And we're going to continue working forward in what we can to have that meeting and have a meeting with Vladimir Putin at some point".

"The requisitioning of private property and other people's money is known as theft", the ministry added.

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It was not clear whether any of those hit have significant holdings in the USA that could be seized, and if they did previously, they may have already moved their money elsewhere in anticipation of the sanctions.

Above all else, Russia's attempts to subvert Western democracy prompted the US sanctions, officials said, in a direct nod to concerns that the USA president has failed to challenge Putin for alleged interference in the 2016 election that brought Trump to power.

But Friday's announcement also came as Washington and its allies face a new diplomatic crisis with the Kremlin over the poisoning of Skripal, a former Russian double agent, and his daughter on British soil.

According to the Hill, if the Congress approve the bill, the new sanctions will be based on the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, which Donald Trump, U.S. President, signed in August 2017.

Federal Bureau of Investigation agents working for special counsel Robert Mueller searched a storage unit containing records for former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort last May and used the documents to support criminal charges against him.

Trump told reporters in January he was "looking forward" to an interview with Mueller, insisting there was no collusion between his campaign and Russian Federation.

The Trump administration announced on Thursday that Mr Deripaska was among the individuals and firms being punished for the "ongoing and increasingly brazen pattern" of bad behaviour by Moscow, including accusations of involvement in the nerve agent attack in Salisbury and alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election.

"There remains only a desire of the United States to ensure by all means its global hegemony", it said.

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