Saturday, 17 November, 2018

Do the U.S. sanctions against Russian Federation have any bite?

Do the U.S. sanctions against Russian Federation have any bite? Do the U.S. sanctions against Russian Federation have any bite?
Patty Aguilar | 18 March, 2018, 12:53

Vladimir Putin has made a late appeal to his people to participate in Sunday's Russian presidential election and make their voices heard in selecting the nation's leader.

Senior administration officials said the penalties on five Russian entities and 19 individuals are meant to punish Russia for "malicious cyber activity" and the "reckless and irresponsible conduct of its government", a rare public rebuke of the Vladimir Putin-led Kremlin by the Trump administration. The penalties also apply to Russia's Main Intelligence Directorate, or GBU, and another government intelligence service US intelligence and law enforcement agencies have concluded was involved in meddling in the 2016 election via cyber activities.

A senior administration official told Reuters that Trump, who campaigned on warmer ties with Putin, has grown exasperated with Russian activity.

Yevgeny Prigozhin, who ran the St. Petersburg-based Internet Research Agency, has been targeted by the US sanctions along with 12 of the agency's employees.

The comment came on the same day the Trump administration announced it is enacting new sanctions on Russian individuals indicted last month by special counsel Robert Mueller.

US national security officials say the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Homeland Security Department and intelligence agencies have determined that Russian intelligence and others are behind attacks on the American energy sector.

The Homeland Security Department says a Russian government hacking operation has affected the US nuclear, aviation, water, construction and manufacturing sectors.

Mr Mueller has today also subpoenaed the Trump Organisation for documents, including some related to Russian Federation, the New York Times has reported.

Dmitry Peskov told reporters Thursday the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal "doesn't affect" the campaign for Sunday's election, which he called Russia's top priority.

A senior administration told reporters on a conference call that Russian actors infiltrated parts of the United States energy sector.

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Around 5,000 people were sheltering at the nearby town of Adra and many more would arrive on Friday, the Adra mayor said. Yesterday, a Turkish air strike killed 11 civilians in the city as they were preparing to leave, it said.

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Trump had appeared reluctant previously to criticize Russian President Vladimir Putin or to take strong action against Russia . Russian Federation swiftly rebuked May over her government's actions.

He called it "something that should never, ever happen, and we're taking it very seriously, as I think are many others".

A US government alert to industry says the hackers deleted activity logs to try to cover their tracks.

"We are ready to act when we have the available information and evidence to do so", the official said.

My own view is that, over the years, sanctions have been working.

Thursday's action blocks all property of those targeted that is subject to USA jurisdiction and prohibits American citizens from engaging in transactions with them.

Q: What are the differences between living in Russian Federation and living in the United States?

It is the first known order directly related to Mr Trump's sprawling business empire, and a sign the investigation into possible collusion between Russian Federation and the Trump campaign during the 2016 election is inching closer to the President. "So, President Trump, are you going to get smart about the threat Russian Federation poses to the United States and our allies?" In both cases, Moscow has dismissed the accusations of involvement in the attacks.

Republican House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce also said the administration did not go far enough.

The Treasury Department said it would keep pressure on Russian Federation for its ongoing efforts to destabilize Ukraine and occupy the Crimea region, as well as corruption and human rights abuses.

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