Putin: New sanctions will 'complicate' Russia-US ties

Putin: New sanctions will 'complicate' Russia-US ties

However, Sen. Robert Menendez was skeptical, telling Politico, "I just cannot fathom how House Republicans could ultimately, with everything that's going on with Russia's nefarious actions, try to either deep-six the bill or dramatically change it". Rand Paul of Kentucky and Mike Lee of Utah, both Republicans, were the only votes against it - bolsters existing sanctions and would allow Congress to thwart any presidential effort to curtail sanctions without congressional approval.

European allies, Germany and Austria, expressed concern for the impact the Russia sanctions could have on Russian natural gas supplies with Europe. Trump has repeatedly dismissed Russian electoral meddling, raising questions about whether the White House might reject the Senate's sanctions deal.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has already indicated his mixed feelings for the measure, saying publicly that while he agreed "with the sentiment" that Russian Federation be held accountable for its election meddling, he also wanted Congress "to ensure any legislation allows the president to have the flexibility to adjust sanctions to meet the needs of what is always an evolving diplomatic situation".

The restrictions on President Trump to lift sanctions on Russian Federation grew out of a directive from the president his first week in office seeking a review of all sanctions imposed by the United States government.

Trump officials have been eager to crack down on Iran's non-nuclear illicit activities, and have squeezed the country with additional sanctions while they conduct a comprehensive Iran policy review.

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"Today the Senate has finally confronted Russian Federation for interfering in our elections". House aides said they expected the chamber would begin to debate the measure in the coming weeks, although they could not predict when it might face a final vote. It's attached as an amendment to an Iran sanctions bill.

The legislation also curbs President Trump's power to unilaterally remove sanctions on Russian Federation without congressional approval.

In addition, within 180 days after the introduction of amendments, the head of the U.S. Treasury Department must submit a report on the possible consequences of extending sanctions on Russia's sovereign debt to the Congress.

- Require a study on the flow of illicit finance involving Russia and a formal assessment of US economic exposure to Russian state-owned entities.

The Senate bill imposes mandatory sanctions on people involved in Iran's ballistic missile program and anyone who does business with them. Bill Nelson (D-Florida) and other lawmakers. The bill would require a congressional review if President Donald Trump attempts to ease or end penalties against Moscow. They would target Russia's defense, intelligence, railway, mining and shipping industries.

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