The United States has completed an investigation into Russia’s hostile actions, from interference in the elections in an attempt to denigrate the victorious Joe Biden to a cyberattack on American government agencies through Solarwinds software.
According to Bloomberg, citing sources in the administration, Washington’s response will be the deportation of Russian spies working under diplomatic cover, as well as a new package of sanctions.
It will affect people from the inner circle of Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as government agencies responsible, according to the United States, for hostile steps.
In addition to compromising Biden and hacking, the list of such actions includes the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny and financing the assassinations of the American military in Afghanistan.
The deadline for new sanctions is in the coming weeks, not months, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a press briefing on Wednesday. She stressed that these measures are aimed at “holding Russia accountable for reckless and hostile actions.”
In addition, the Biden administration has a new package of sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 project ready, Politico reports.
It will hit the Swiss-registered 100% subsidiary of Gazprom, Nord Sream 2 AG, the company that is the direct operator of the construction. Personal sanctions are also planned against its CEO Matthias Waring.
The US Department of Justice approved the package about two months ago, Politico sources say. But since then it has been lying on the shelf without action.
There is no consensus in the Biden administration on sanctions against Russia, and Nord Stream 2 has put officials in a position “between a rock and a hard place,” says one of the sources of the publication. On the one hand, Washington wants to punish Moscow and is under intense congressional pressure to end the project once and for all. On the other hand, Biden aims to restore relations with Germany, undermined by the Donald Trump administration.
Russia will respond to any unfriendly steps by the United States, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Thursday.
The American policy towards Russia is “dead-end, and maybe even stupid,” the minister said, adding that the sanctions “do not bring any results in terms of the goals that were announced when the sanctions were introduced.”
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