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European Union 'Stands Ready to Act' Over US Sanctions on Russian Federation

27 July 2017

The House passed the sanctions package Tuesday by a vote of 419-3 vote.

Eliot Engel, a Democratic deputy, said: "This administration has shown over and over that they are willing to cozy up to [Russian leader Vladimir] Putin".

"We understand that the Russia/Iran sanctions bill is driven primarily by domestic considerations", read the statement in reference to a last month bill passed by US Senate. But it fears the latest measures could hit companies that are involved in the financing of a controversial new pipeline, Nord Stream 2, that would carry natural gas from Russian Federation to Germany.

"The EU should heed the advice of those who are recommending a reconsideration of the project, including the possibility of abandoning it ..." Europe has alternative sources and future gas supplies will not depend exclusively on Gazprom and Nord Stream II.

Still, Germany welcomed the latest legislative proposals calling for United States coordination with European Union allies before sanctions are applied, Mr Schaefer said. Cooperation on counter-terrorism between Russian Federation and the U.S.

In June, the U.S. introduced new sanctions against Russian Federation over Ukraine and Crimea, which Moscow called a "pointless" move. President Trump has little choice, his aides acknowledge, but to sign legislation for toughened USA sanctions against Russian Federation that he wanted to see defeated. And, of course, how long until Russia expels some 30 U.S. diplomats now that it is abundantly clear the United States won't return the seized Russian diplomatic compounds as Putin has been demanding in recent weeks. According to the newspaper, the final bill, which initially included restrictions against Iran, will also include sanctions against North Korea, as McCarthy suggested earlier.

The paper had a document prepared for the European Commission meeting on July 26th.

But northern European Union states in particular have sought to shield the supplies of Russian gas that they rely on.

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In an effort to address those concerns, the latest version of the bill clarifies that only Russian energy export pipelines can be sanctioned, something which will not help as Brussels contemplates how to retaliate.

Separately, a German Foreign Ministry spokesman said it would be unacceptable for the United States to use possible sanctions against Russian Federation as a tool of industrial policy and called for close coordination of proposed sanctions between the European Union and Washington. German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel and Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern said, "Europe's energy supply is a matter for Europe, not the United States of America".

"This year, the largest volume of shipments is planned: we are shipping eleven RD-180 engines for US Atlas V rockets and four RD-181 engines for Antares rockets", he said.

However, the European Commission has told the EU to act if the move goes ahead. The impact would be "wide and indiscriminate", the European Commission said.

Any retaliatory measure against the U.S. would require the support of the group of countries opposing Nord Stream 2. And with major German firms involved in gas pipeline, it is seen as strategically and economically important.

It would also harm Ukraine by making its transit pipelines obsolete at a time when the country was trying to align itself with the West.

Peskov said the Kremlin took "an extremely negative view" of the proposed new sanctions.

European Union 'Stands Ready to Act' Over US Sanctions on Russian Federation