The US must make Putin pay for his nerve agent attack

The US must make Putin pay for his nerve agent attack

The US State Department issued a formal determination that Russian Federation poisoned Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with Novichok in the Wiltshire town in March.

Lavrov reiterated Russia's position that Moscow played no role in the alleged nerve agent attack on ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the British city of Salisbury, Xinhua quoted the Foreign Ministry as saying.

The action is aimed at punishing President Vladimir Putin's government for having "used chemical or biological weapons in violation of worldwide law", State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.

She said sanctions would take effect on or around August 22.

The official told reporters that the administration made a decision to impose a "presumption of denial" for the sale to Russian Federation of "national security sensitive" USA technologies that require federal government approval.

"The categories covered by this could include things such as electronic, computers, sensors and lasers, telecommunications, specialised oil and gas production equipment and information and security technologies, just to name a few".

"We consider categorically unacceptable the linking of new restrictions, which we as before consider illegal, to the case in Salisbury", he told journalists. He argued Russian Federation "could not have any connection to the use of chemical weapons".

If Russia was brazen enough to kill with a chemical weapon on British soil, could it happen in the United States?

Earlier Wednesday, State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert released a statement explaining the sanctions.

The United Kingdom blamed Russia for the attack, resulting in the expulsion of 150 Russian diplomats from the U.K., U.S. and other allies.

In March, the United States joined European nations in expelling Russian diplomats to answer the poisonings.


The Kremlin, meanwhile, repeated its previous denial of any involvement in the attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in southern England this year, while playing down the importance of the sanctions.

Although Skripal and his daughter recovered after intensive care in hospital, another woman Dawn Sturgess died after coming into contact with the agent on 30 June.

London and its allies have accused Moscow of trying to kill the Skripals and says the two cases are likely linked.

The new sanctions pushed the ruble to two-year lows and sparked a wider sell-off over fears Russian Federation was locked in a spiral of never-ending sanctions.

Russia's continued denial of responsibility increases the likelihood that more-sweeping US sanctions will be imposed in 90 days.

Moscow still denies any involvement in the March 4 attack in Salisbury, England, and calls the usa response "categorically unacceptable".

Export-focused companies such as metals and mining firms as well as the energy sector, have benefited from the weaker rouble which has been under pressure since 2014, when the first Western sanctions were imposed on Moscow over Ukraine.

Sergei Ryabukhin, head of the budget committee in the upper house of parliament, called the measures announced by the state department late on Wednesday the "most obnoxious and cynical behaviour on the market" and said Russian Federation has the means to respond if leader Vladimir Putin wishes to do so.

Word of more USA sanctions has rattled the Russian currency and stock markets. Given that Russian Federation flatly denies involvement in the incident, it appears unlikely to accede to the United States demands.

Paul said the letter "emphasized the importance of further engagement in various areas including countering terrorism, enhancing legislative dialogue and resuming cultural exchanges".

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