Lavrov Calls New US Sanctions on Russia 'Outrageous'

© Sputnik / Grigoriy Sisoev / Go to the mediabankMoscow, Russia. News conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov evaluating the 2016 performance of Russian diplomacy.
Moscow, Russia. News conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov evaluating the 2016 performance of Russian diplomacy. - Sputnik International
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called new US sanctions against Russia "outrageous."

DVORIKI (Sputnik) – New US sanctions against Russia target the country's defense, intelligence, mining, shipping and railway industries and restricts dealings with Russian banks and energy companies.

"Of course, the law is outrageous, goes without saying," Lavrov said at a forum.

An intention of the United States to promote its economic interests in Europe by imposing new sanctions against Russia is absolutely "shameless," Lavrov said.

"The latest package of anti-Russian sanctions undoubtedly caused counteraction in Europe, as it so obviously sends the message that it is necessary to buy gas from the United States despite the fact that it is much more expensive, to keep Europe inside transatlantic relations and think of interests of its [US] energy companies. It is being done shamelessly by using methods of entirely unfair competition."

The United States will keep its sanctions against Russia in place for a long time, Lavrov noted.

"It is hard for me to make a guess regarding the duration of the current situation, it seems like it will not end tomorrow or the day after. You are probably following the atmosphere in the Congress in Washington, their attitude is serious, for a long time. Every year, the [US] finance ministry should present some reports to the Congress on how who is acting in what way in Russia."

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Russia will not act to the detriment of its interests in the "sanctions war," the foreign minister said.

"We know that some of the Western elite would like to see Russia weak. The ‘sanctions war’ aims to reach this goal, they would like to see a Russia that is ready to make concessions to the detriment of its interests. We will not do anything to the detriment of our interests, everyone knows this," Lavrov said.

On August 2, US President Donald Trump signed into law a new bill imposing additional sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea. The law also limits the US president's ability to ease any sanctions on Russia by requiring Congressional approval to lift any restrictions.

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Earlier, the Russian Foreign Ministry described the new sanctions as "absolutely illegitimate" and responded with its countermeasures, suspending the use of all US Embassy warehouses and its compound in Moscow. Russia also mandated that the US cut the size of its diplomatic staff in Russia by 755 people by September 1.

Prior to imposing countermeasures, Russian President Vladimir Putin said late July that Russia is behaving patiently amid sanctions, but time will come when Moscow will be forced to respond to arrogance, adding that if adopted, the US anti-Russia sanctions bill would be an "extra-cynical move."

The new US sanctions were also criticized by the European Union, particularly due to the concerns that the new sanctions will impact its economic interests, especially its energy cooperation with Russia. France and Germany have spoken out against the bill as it affects European industries while advancing US commercial interests.

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