US imposes new sanctions on Russia over Ukraine

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said the United States has been a "co-sponsor of this story of success" in helping his country fight for freedom against Russian aggression, as he sat with President Donald Trump in the Oval Office Tuesday.

USA allies and outgoing US officials feared for months Trump would upend traditional commitments to Europe and sell Ukraine down the river for a rapprochement with Russian President Vladimir Putin, whom he lavished with praised during the U.s. presidential campaign.

United States sanctions on Russian Federation will remain in place until Moscow withdraws from eastern Ukraine, a White House spokesman said on Tuesday. But the White House didn't exactly roll out the red carpet for the Ukrainian president.

The U.S. Senate last week approved new measures against Moscow that limit Trump's ability to roll back sanctions against Russian Federation.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement that "there should be no sanctions relief until Russian Federation meets its obligations under the Minsk agreements".

The European Union extended its own sanctions over Russia's annexation of Crimea on Monday.

"The president will inform the talkers about the aggravation of the security situation in Donbas, the status of implementation and specific cases of violation by the Russian side of the Minsk agreements with a view to ensuring a positive decision of the European Council to extend sectoral sanctions against Russia", a message says.

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson had called on lawmakers to grant "flexibility" to the White House in dealing with Russian Federation.

Moscow seized Ukraine's Crimean peninsula in 2014 and has backed pro-Russian separatist rebels battling Kiev's forces in eastern Ukraine.

Trump and Putin are expected to see each other at an global gathering in Germany next month. "We've had some very, very good discussions".

White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Tuesday said the United States will continue to sanction Russian Federation until it stops backing separatists in eastern Ukraine.

As a candidate, Mr. Trump suggested that his presidency would herald a new era of improved relations between the United States and Russian Federation, but the various investigations into possible collusion by his campaign have dampened those hopes. He also held talks with Tillerson and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.

The Trump administration slapped additional sanctions on dozens of individuals and companies tied to Russia's slow-burning proxy war in Ukraine on Tuesday. Before he left Russia Bakholdin took part in demonstrations in support of political prisoners and protested Russia's involvement in the Ukraine war.

The Ohio college student died Monday at a Cincinnati hospital, almost a week after his return to the United States after being held in North Korea for more than 17 months.

"We received strong support from the U.S. side, support in terms of sovereignty, territorial integrity and the independence of our state", Poroshenko said. "We support you in the face of threats to sovereignty, to global law or to the worldwide order".

  • Leroy Wright


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