The United States announced the imposition of more sanctions on Russian entities and the expulsion of 10 Kremlin diplomats

Joe Biden (Andrew Harnick / Paul via Reuters)

The United States imposed sanctions on Russia on Thursday over its alleged interference in the 2020 presidential election And his supposed role in Internet attack Huge of SolarWinds, In addition to imposing sanctions related to Russian actions in Ukraine and Afghanistan.

President Joe Biden A. Extending restrictions on US banks dealing in Russian government debt, The expulsion of 10 diplomats, including suspected spies s 32 people are punished The White House, which allegedly tried to interfere in the 2020 presidential election, said.

Biden Executive Order “It sends a signal that the United States will impose costs in a manner that has a strategic and economic impact on Russia if it continues or intensifies its destabilizing international action.”The White House said.

In response, The Kremlin summoned the US ambassador to Moscow s Considered “inevitable” Transponder For the US decision.

The sanctions, which the administration has introduced for weeks, mark the first announced retaliatory measures against the Kremlin for its cyberattack on SolarWinds. In this intrusion, it is believed that Russian hackers infected widely used programs with malicious codes, allowing them access to Networks of at least nine agencies in what US officials believe is an intelligence gathering process Aimed at digging for government secrets.

In addition, US officials claimed last month that the Russian president Russian President Vladimir Putin Authorized operations from Intervening to help Donald Trump in his failed attempt at re-election as president, Although there is no evidence that Russia or anyone other than the votes or manipulated the score.

Russian President Vladimir Putin during a conference on April 14 (Sputnik / Alexei Druzhinin / The Kremlin via Reuters)
Russian President Vladimir Putin during a conference on April 14 (Sputnik / Alexei Druzhinin / The Kremlin via Reuters)

It includes measures announced Thursday Sanctions on six Russian companies that support cyber activities in the country, In addition to penalties for Thirty-two individuals and entities were accused of trying to interfere in the presidential elections last year, Even by spreading the wrong information.

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between the 10 expelled diplomats meet with representatives of Russian intelligence servicesThe White House said.

In addition, the actions Biden ordered include some measures that have not been announced. A senior US official said.

“There will be elements in our reactions that will remain invisible,” The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.

The White House said that, too Biden was using diplomatic, military, and intelligence channels to respond to reports that Russia had encouraged the Taliban to attack American and allied forces in Afghanistan. Based on “best ratings” from the intelligence community.

In the last year there have been reports on Presumed ‘rewards’, The Trump administration has been criticized for not raising the issue directly with Russia. The White House did not confirm these reports publicly. “The safety and well-being of the US military, and the safety of our allies and partners, is an absolute priority for the United States,” the White House said on Thursday.

on the other side, Treasury Department, Together with European UnionAnd the AustraliaAnd the Britain s Canada, It endorses it Eight individuals and entities linked to the Russian occupation of Crimea in Ukraine.

After the American announcement, NATO expressed its support and “solidarity” with the United States Before sanctioning of whom he called ‘Destabilizing activities’, Especially in Ukraine s Georgia.

Weak relationships

The sanctions are intended to send a clear message of retaliation to Russia and certainly deter similar actions in the future It will exacerbate the already strained relationship between the United States and Russia.

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Since January, with the arrival of the new president to the White House, Relations between Moscow and Washington deteriorated further And very fast. The Russian ambassador to the United States was called in for consultations after Joe Biden called his Russian counterpart a “killer.”

RussiaNew sanctions have already been applied to them during this year, Convicted of imprisonment for the main opponent of the country, Alexei Navalny And according to Washington, it was He was caught “red-handed” in several piracy cases.

What’s more, Moscow has deployed tens of thousands of troops on the border with Ukraine, Accusing Kiev of planning an attack on pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Russia has it yet It ignored all Western calls to reduce its forces in the region.

Russia deploys its military forces "an exercise" On its western side (EFE / EPA / SERGEI ILNITSK / File)
Russia deploys military forces to conduct ‘exercises’ on its western flank (EFE / EPA / SERGEI ILNITSK / Archivo)

in this context, Biden called Putin on Tuesday to offer to hold a summit in a third country.. The Kremlin did not accept the proposal immediately, but welcomed the invitation.

But the Kremlin ruled on Thursday that new US sanctions would not be in the interest of organizing the summit proposed by the White House.

“What is currently being discussed – possible sanctions – such a meeting would not be preferred in any way,” The Russian presidential spokesperson estimated, Dmitry PeskovAdding that the question before the two presidents “is whether this will prevent it or not.”

“We condemn any initiative to impose sanctions that we consider unlawful.”Added.

Effects of solar wind intrusion

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It was not clear if the United States’ actions would actually lead to a change in Russian behavior.Especially since the previous American measures failed to put an end to the Russian cyber attacks.

The Obama administration expelled diplomats from the United States in 2016 in response to interference in the presidential election that year. in spite of Trump card He was often reluctant to criticize Putin, His administration also expelled diplomats in 2018 On charges of poisoning Russia to a former intelligence officer in Britain.

US officials are still wrestling with them In the wake of the storming of the solar wind, That has affected agencies like the Treasury, Justice, Energy, and Homeland Security, and are still evaluating information that may have been stolen. The breach exposed weaknesses in the supply chainAs well as weaknesses in the federal government’s cyber defenses.

These actions will mark the second major round of sanctions the Biden administration has imposed on Russia.. Last month, the United States imposed sanctions on seven middle and senior Russian officials, along with more than a dozen government entities, for the near-fatal nerve gas attack on opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his subsequent imprisonment.

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