Russian Federation must be sanctioned for using chemical weapons, United Kingdom insists


While both Skripals survived the attack, the USA sided with Britain in determining Russian Federation was responsible after investigators concluded the would-be assassins used a Soviet-era nerve toxin known as "Novichok".

Russia's embassy in the United States called the new USA sanctions draconian and said the reason for the new restrictions - allegations it had poisoned the Skripals in Britain - was far-fetched.

Skripal and his daughter were poisoned by the Novichok military-grade nerve agent in the English city of Salisbury in March. This included siding with the Russian leader over US intelligence regarding alleged Kremlin interference in the 2016 elections that brought Trump to the White House.

The United States will impose sanctions on Russia for its use of a nerve agent in an attempt to kill a former Russian spy and his daughter in Britain.

In March former Russian spy Sergey Skripal and his daughter, Yulia Skripal, were poisoned with a Soviet-designed nerve agent known as Novichok.

In an early reaction, the Kremlin said the sanctions were illegal and unfriendly, and the US move was at odds with the "constructive atmosphere" of Trump's and Putin's encounter in Helsinki.

The U.S. announcement fueled already worsening investor sentiment about the possible effect of more U.S. sanctions on Russian assets and the ruble slid by over 1 percent on Thursday against the dollar, a day after falling toward its lowest level in almost two years. One of them died.

He added: "Making a linking to these events is for us unacceptable and such restrictions like those passed by the American side earlier are absolutely illegal and do not correspond to worldwide law".

In a statement issued by its embassy in Washington, Russia called charges that Moscow employed chemical weapons "far fetched" - arguing the USA lacked evidence, and repeating demands for a new investigation into the poisoning.

A fresh round of economic sanctions are to come into force on August 22 as punishment for Russia's violation of global law, the department said.

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

If Moscow violates the sanctions then it could see restrictions on flights from the Russian Aeroflot airline to the USA, sanctions on US bank loans, increased export and import restrictions, including on gas and petroleum, and potentially even a downgrade of diplomatic relations.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks with spokesman Dmitry Peskov, center, and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in Sochi on May 18. Rand Paul hand-delivered a letter from Mr. Trump to Putin, asking for "expanding dialogue".

He has been at the property since last Thursday and has made only a handful of appearances since.

The State Department's surprise announcement of the new sanctions on Wednesday jolted Moscow, where some politicians and analysts had been hopeful that Putin's meeting with President Trump in Helsinki in July would stabilize U.S.

After pressure from Republican members of Congress, the state department has determined Moscow broke worldwide law by using a military-grade chemical weapon on the Skripals.