Monday, 23 July, 2018

Senate Votes to Impose New Sanctions on Russian Federation, 97-2

Kenny Thornton | 17 June, 2017, 01:43

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved an amendment that would strengthen sanctions against Russian Federation as a punishment for its campaign to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Senators on both sides of the aisle negotiated the measure, and that rare bipartisan cooperation continued into the final vote - it was 97 to 2.

The sanctions create a congressional review process if the executive branch eases current sanctions and imposes new sanctions in categories including malicious cyber activity and weapons supply to the Assad regime in Syria.

Tillerson was noncommittal about a package of new Russian Federation sanctions during testimony Tuesday before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

The only senators who voted against the measure were Republicans Rand Paul and Mike Lee.

It also aims to punish Russia's Vladimir Putin for interfering in last year's USA election, and to make it tougher for the White House to roll back sanctions.

The bill also includes new sanctions on Iran over its ballistic missile program and other activities not related to the worldwide nuclear agreement reached with the United States and other world powers. Corker said he'd agreed to give Tillerson a "short window of opportunity" to reverse the deteriorating relationship between the United States and Russian Federation. In the early months of the Trump administration, the first-time public office holder has followed through on fringe campaign vows such as exiting the Paris Climate Accord, imposing a travel ban on Muslims, and hiring more border patrol agents. Bob Corker of Tennessee, the Republican chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee.

Adam West Honored With Bat-Signal Tribute In Los Angeles
He said he was excited to switch on the bat signal, admitting he felt the urge to call on Batman's support weekly. West's wife Marcelle was joined by their daughters, as well as actress Lee Meriwether, 82, who played Catwoman.

In December, following the election, the Obama administration imposed new sanctions against Russian Federation and expelled a number of its diplomats as punishment for meddling in the presidential election. Brown also said the veto-proof vote on the sanctions package should send a strong signal to the White House. The bill would require a congressional review if Trump attempts to ease or end penalties against Moscow.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., also participated in the negotiations and pushed for provisions that bar punished individuals from using family members to get around the sanctions.

- Allow broad new sanctions on key sectors of Russia's economy, including mining, metals, shipping and railways.

House and Senate committees are investigating Russia's meddling and potential links to the Trump campaign.

"This bipartisan agreement to stiffen sanctions is a significant step forward", said Sen. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is conducting a separate probe.

It hits Russian Federation with new sanctions and codifies the existing ones imposed by the Obama administration for Russia's occupation of Crimea and incursion into eastern Ukraine as well as its military intervention in Syria and its interference in the 2016 U.S.

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