Russian Federation call U.S. sanctions on business entities "erroneous"

Russian Federation call U.S. sanctions on business entities

Russian Federation call U.S. sanctions on business entities "erroneous"

Russia will not leave new USA sanctions and any future hostile actions without a tough response, the Russian Foreign Ministry has said after Washington announced a new round of restrictions against Moscow.

New US actions against Russian Federation come in response to full range of activities going back well before Trump administration took office, an unnamed administration official told journalists.

Administration officials have said the sanctions against Russian oligarchs is not in direct response to any one event, but rather a broad range of Russian activity around the globe including: the occupation of Crimea & violence in Eastern Ukraine, malicious cyber activities, and Moscow's "continued attempts to subvert Western democracies".

On the list there are also the director of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies Mikhail Fradkov, Tula Region's Governor, Aleksei Dyumin, presidential aide Yevgeny Shkolov, presidential representative in the Southern Federal District Vladimir Ustinov, chief of the Interior Ministry's department for resistance to extremism Timur Valiulin, Bank of Russia deputy governor, Aleksander Torshin, Russian Guard chief Viktor Zolotov, State Duma Speaker Vladislav Reznik, and chief of the presidential office for socio-economic cooperation with the CIS countries, the republic of Abkhazia and the Republic of South Ossetia Oleg Govorun.

The fresh sanctions are the latest step by the U.S. against Russia following the poisoning of a former Russian spy in England, interference in the United States 2016 election and a cyberattack, CNN said. The Treasury Department said Mr Deripaska was accused of illegal wiretaps, extortion, racketeering, money laundering and even death threats against business rivals.

Russia's state arms exporter, a key tool in Putin's efforts to support the modernization of his own military by selling advanced hardware around the world, was also added to the sanctions list. Deripaska's conglomerate, Basic Element, said it regretted the sanctions and was analyzing them with its lawyers.

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Mr Putin's government dismissed the sanctions as "absurdity", arguing that the U.S. was punishing companies that have longstanding business ties to the US.

The seizure of Russian diplomatic facilities in the U.S. has demonstrated that "the right to private property, once sacred for Americans, has become an empty phrase", the ministry said.

"American democracy is clearly degrading", the ministry said. "[Its only] desire is to ensure by all means that USA global hegemony remains, including pressuring countries that conduct an independent line and speak [with] their own voice, unlike Washington's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies", Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement, RT reports.

Further complicating matters is that the sanctions come only a few days after President Donald Trump invited Russian President Vladimir Putin to the White House for talks.

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"Not at all", Sanders said.

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Those punished aren't necessarily involved in the Russian actions in Syria, Ukraine or elsewhere that have drawn consternation from the west. But officials said the goal was to put pressure on Putin by showing that those who have benefited financially from his position of power are fair game.

The officials declined to elaborate why Putin himself was not directly targeted by the sanctions, but emphasized that several in the Russian leader's inner circle were being targeted.

The Treasury Department describes Shamalov's elevation into "the ranks of the billionaire elite around Putin" after marrying Putin's daughter Katerina Tikhonova in 2013.

- Alexei Miller, the longtime head of Gazprom, the state-controlled natural gas giant.

The sanctions - the Trump administration's most aggressive action against Kremlin-connected individuals - target 17 Russian government officials, a state-owned weapons trading company, and seven so-called oligarchs and 12 companies affiliated with them.

Other notable figures include Andrei Skoch who now serves as a Deputy of the State Duma and formerly ran a criminal enterprise and Viktor Vekselberg, chairman of the Renova Group, an organization of asset management companies known for their work in the energy sector, as well as for bribing officials.

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