Local lawmaker supported House measures imposing new sanctions on Russian Federation

The US Senate has voted almost unanimously to slap new sanctions on Russia despite President Donald Trump's objections to the legislation, which has angered Russian President Vladimir Putin who threatened to retaliate.

After the adoption of the document called "the Law on counteraction to enemies of America by sanctions", the Senate, it must be approved by the head of state.

During weeks of negotiations, the Trump administration initially pushed back at what it saw as an attempt to limit the executive branch's ability to unilaterally ease sanctions, making the case that it limits US leverage in attempts to impact Russian behavior and build a better relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The sanctions bill, which includes sanctions on Iran and North Korea, passed the Senate by a margin of 98-2 and then stalled in the House.

Trump's concerns include a provision letting Congress stop any effort to ease existing sanctions on Russian Federation.

The bill, which includes a provision that allows Congress to stop any effort by Trump to ease existing sanctions on Russian Federation, will now be sent to the White House for Trump to sign into law or veto.

President Trump sits in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington on Tuesday.

Tensions between the USA and Russian Federation have deepened since the election, despite a relatively warm relationship between Trump and Putin.

He has repeatedly cast doubt on the conclusion of U.S. intelligence agencies that Russia sought to tip the election in his favour and has blasted as a "witch hunt" investigations into the extent of Russian interference and whether the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow.

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The Ministry said "We propose to the U.S. side to bring the number of diplomatic and technical staff" working in Russia "in exact accordance" with the number of Russian diplomats and support staff in the United States by September 1.

"He may sign the sanctions exactly the way they are or he may veto the sanctions and negotiate an even tougher deal against the Russians", he continued. The White House has said in recent weeks that it didn't want new sanctions in place.

Mark Warner, vice chairman of the Senate select committee on Intelligence, said the bipartisan congressional support for increased sanctions on Russian Federation sends a message to the Kremlin that attacks on the American democracy will not be tolerated.

Russia's response mirrors moves by outgoing President Barack Obama last December to expel 35 Russian diplomats and shut down two Russian estates in the U.S.

Initially, Trump resisted the sanctions legislation.

The U.S. was Russia's third-largest trading partner in 2016 with exports and imports valued at $25.6 billion, though that's still only about five percent of Russia's overall trade.

The deal between House and Senate leadership was reached late Wednesday night. "It is impossible to endlessly endure impudence towards our country".

But the European Union has also expressed concern about the sanctions, fearing that they might adversely affect its energy security.

  • Rita Burton