Uncertain future in House for Senate's Russian Federation sanctions bill

Last week, the US Senate voted in favor of new sanctions against Russian Federation over its alleged interference in the US presidential election in 2016 and against Iran over its missile launches and regional activities.

Legislation that would hit Russian Federation with economic sanctions and limit President Donald Trump's authority to lift the penalties faces an uncertain future in the House despite the bill's heavily bipartisan backing in the Senate.

"In the aftermath of the Iran nuclear deal, AJC has continued to raise concerns about Iran's threatening behavior with our own and other governments", Jason Isaacson, the group's associate executive director for policy, said in a statement.

Scott Bennett, a former US Army psychological warfare officer based in San Francisco, told Press TV on Sunday that the Trump administration had to block new sanctions against Russian Federation and Iran to keep hopes alive for future cooperation.

It also mandated that the U.S. president block assets of any person or company involved in the supply or transfer of "illegal" arms to or from Iran. It complies with the Iran nuclear agreement reached in 2015, which put restrictions on the country's nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.

The measure adding sanctions on Iran due to its ballistic missile program, support for terrorism and human rights breaches passed Thursday in a 98-2 vote.

By tying Iran and Russian Federation together, Congress has made it more hard for Trump to oppose the action as the president, who has been highly critical of Iran, would have to reject the tougher sanctions against Tehran if it rejected other parts of the legislation. She said "we will determine a path ahead in the House" after the Foreign Affairs Committee's assessment is complete. "We have some channels where we're starting to talk, but what I wouldn't want to do is close the channels off".

Still, whether Tillerson is trying to tie the president to a strict plan on Russian relations or not, the idea of working with President Vladimir Putin's government on the global threat of cyber warfare could be labeled as curious given Russia's proven efforts in 2016.

The Austrian and German officials said one motive behind the Senate bill may be an attempt to help US natural-gas suppliers at the expense of their Russian rivals.

"I think some legal questions need to be clarified in relation to Nord Stream 2", Reuters reported Merkel as saying.

  • Leroy Wright