The Obama administration is “likely” to impose sanctions on Russia because of its actions in Ukraine, the State Department declared Monday.
State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that planning for sanctions has gone into overdrive following stepped up Russian interference in the Crimea region, including unconfirmed reports that Russia has given Ukrainian troops in the Crimea until 10 p.m. EST to surrender.
“At this point we’re not just considering sanctions; given the actions Russia has taken it is likely that we will put those in place,” Psaki said. “And we are preparing that right now.”
Psaki did not give any details on what sanctions the administration might impose, but Secretary of State John Kerry has said the U.S. could ban visas and freeze the assets of Russian officials.
Don’t step over the line and re-militarize the Rhineland. Absorbing Austria would cross a red line. Breaking up Czechoslovakia is unacceptable. Get out of Poland by the announced deadline. The rest was history.
Don’t dare blow up another American military barracks overseas. Don’t even consider another attack on the World Trade Center. Don’t even try blowing up one more American embassy in East Africa. Don’t ever put a hole in a U.S. warship again. The rest was history.
President Obama issued yet another one of those sorts of warnings to stop the violence to Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych just before protesters drove Yanukovych out of office. “There will be consequences if people step over the line,” Obama threatened.
Ben Rhodes, Obama’s deputy national-security adviser, amplified that veiled warning. He called the Ukrainian government’s repression “completely outrageous” — as opposed to just outrageous or completely, completely outrageous.
Secretary of State John Kerry joined the chorus of condemnation by hinting at economic sanctions if Yanukovych didn’t stop his violent crackdown on protesters.
A leading House lawmaker is calling on President Obama to publicly release the full text of the recently signed Iran nuclear deal, which is currently being held under lock and key in a secure compound on Capitol Hill.
Rep. Ileana Ros Lehtinen (R., Fla.), a leading member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, wrote to Obama on Wednesday in a bid to force the Iran deal into the public.