US Senate discusses new anti-Russian sanctions

June. 15 (ANI): After Moscow was found to have meddled in the 2016 presidential election, the United States Senate as punishment, has approved new sanctions against Russian Federation.

The agreement negotiated by Foreign Relations and Banking Committee leaders in both parties, with the involvement of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), allows both parties to claim a measure of victory - delivering a legislative win for McConnell while fulfilling the three basic goals Schumer had outlined for a Russian Federation sanctions measure.

Russian President Vladimir Putin walks along the Cathedral Square of the Kremlin, to take part in a holiday reception in Moscow, Monday, June 12, 2017.

Lawmakers advanced the measure just days after it was announced by Banking Chairman Mike Crapo of Idaho and Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker of Tennessee, as well as the ranking Democrats on the those panels, Sherrod Brown of OH and Ben Cardin of Maryland.

"I would urge Congress to ensure any legislation allows the president to have the flexibility to adjust sanctions", Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Wednesday in an appearance before the House Foreign Affairs Committee. "We want to make sure that the current measures are not relaxed until there is an understanding what is being achieved and that me made a significant progress", he added.

The Iran bill is due come up for a vote as soon as this week.

"This is a very comprehensive piece of legislation", Corker said late Monday night following the introduction of the measures. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) voting against the measure. The bill is expected to have strong support when it goes before the full Senate, and would have to then pass in the House of Representatives and be signed by President Donald Trump. Broad new sanctions would be imposed on Russia's mining, metals, shipping and railways sectors.

"These additional sanctions will be a powerful signal from two parties of Russian Federation and other countries that they will be punished if they try to interfere in our elections", commented the inter-party agreement the democratic leader in the Senate, Chuck Schumer.

Corker added that the language "definitely" includes congressional review, which would give Congress oversight over the lifting of sanctions, but Corker didn't specify if it includes new sanctions on Moscow.

In December, the Obama administration responded to Russia's provocations with a slate of sweeping measures that included the expulsion of "intelligence operatives" and sanctions on Russia's central intelligence services.

Earlier it was reported that the U.S. Senate is on the verge of a bipartisan deal to strengthen sanctions against Russian Federation.

The Senate on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly-97 to 2-to add the Russian Federation measure to a bill sanctioning Iran for its work to develop ballistic missile technology, in a bipartisan rebuke to Trump's suggestions about improving relations with Russian Federation.

  • Leroy Wright