US Will Sanction Russia After UK Nerve Agent Attack

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"The UK welcomes this further action by our U.S. allies", said a spokesman for the Foreign Office in a statement.

Unless Russia agrees within 90 days to stop all use of chemical weapons and permit inspections to confirm their elimination, the law requires the United States to choose from a range of additional measures, including withdrawal of USA support for worldwide loans and US bank loans, prohibition of landing rights for Russian airlines, and suspension of diplomatic relations.

They were found in a serious condition on a bench in The Maltings shopping centre, and the discovery of the substance sparked a city-wide investigation with police having to cordon off large areas, including where they had eaten dinner that evening.

The new USA sanctions come amid increasing frustration with Trump's handling of Russian Federation, and how he apparently needed congressional prodding to impose the new penalties.

Asian share markets found support on Thursday as a rally in Chinese stocks helped offset the latest escalation in the Sino-U.S. trade war, while Russia's rouble tumbled as the United States slapped fresh sanctions on the country.

The sanctions enacted so far this year, and the threat of more, have already inflicted pain on Russia's middle class.

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Speaking after the State Department announcement, Royce said the administration was "rightly acting to uphold worldwide bans on the use of chemical weapons".

The second round of sanctions could cut far deeper, including blocking all American bank loans to Russian entities, an outright ban on U.S. exports to Russia, and suspension of diplomatic relations.

Moscow has angrily rejected any involvement in the poisoning, plunging diplomatic relations with London into crisis.

A fresh round of economic sanctions are to come into force on August 22 as punishment for Russia's violation of worldwide law, the department said.

Once that determination is made, the president has no choice but to impose sanctions unless he determines that it is not in the security interest of the United States and decides to waive the mandate.

What was the nerve agent?

The United Kingdom blamed Russia for the attack, resulting in the expulsion of 150 Russian diplomats from the U.K., U.S. and other allies.

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The Russian economy is still reeling from global sanctions imposed on Moscow in 2014 over its actions in Ukraine and a crash in oil prices the same year. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the initiative's sponsors, says one of the draft legislation's goals is to impose "crushing sanctions".

Some former officials told The Post, however, that the order seemed more like a "a cover-your-behind exercise" for the administration than meant to seriously deter foreign powers.

Last week, a group of Democrat and Republican senators introduced a bill that would impose some of the toughest sanctions ever placed on modern Russian Federation.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told reporters he wanted it to be a "sanctions bill from hell".

The rouble slid to its lowest since late 2016, hitting 66.1 roubles to the dollar and leaving it nearly 4 percent lighter than it had been 24 hours previously.

But Peskov said the sanctions undo the goodwill curried by presidents Trump and Putin at their Helsinki summit last month.

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