Putin most likely behind spy poisoning - Johnson

Russia has rolled out a robot tank
CEN YOUTUBERussia has rolled out a robot tank

19 March, 2018

The referendum was deemed illegitimate by at least 100 countries.

"Once the elements are proven, then the time will come for decisions to be made" he said just hours after Theresa May had accused Moscow of carrying out an assassination attempt, and announced the expulsion of 23 Russians here under diplomatic accreditation.

While Ryabkov said Moscow did not wish to sever all communications with Washington, he blamed the mounting tensions on "American political stubbornness", and warned that USA lawmakers were "playing with fire by destroying Russian-American relationship because simultaneously they shake global stability".

Reaction from Russian Federation was swift.

Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal, 66, and daughter Yulia Skripal, 33, remain critically ill in hospital, after they were found unconscious on a bench in the Wiltshire city on 4 March.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov shrugged off the British allegations as "absolutely rude, unsubstantiated and baseless" and suggested the poisonings were a set-up to discredit Moscow.

Putin continued calling the shots during the next four years as his longtime associate Dmitry Medvedev served as Russia's president.

The U.S. Treasury Department announced the sanctions amid withering criticism accusing Trump and his administration of failing to use its congressionally mandated authority to punish Russian Federation. He wished the Skripals a speedy recovery and said he hopes they can shed light on what happened when they are well. To be honest, I was even thinking about working as a taxi driver. "Now what's needed is the credible deterrent message". There is no functional multi-party democracy to speak of; rather, voters are being asked to legitimize another six years of Putin's (admittedly still-popular) rule, and in doing so legitimize autocracy at the highest levels of Russian politics via seal of national approval by plebiscite. That's leaving his counterparts in the West baffled about why he's taking such a hard turn toward confrontation on so many fronts.

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"These targeted sanctions are a part of a broader effort to address the ongoing nefarious attacks emanating from Russia", Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

Even as the geopolitical tensions rose, Russian Federation pushed ahead with a Eurobond sale Thursday.

"Our quarrel is with Putin's Kremlin, and with this decision, and we think it overwhelmingly likely that it was his decision to direct the use of a nerve agent on the streets of the United Kingdom, on the streets of Europe, for the first time since the Second World War", he said. He later urged Trump to sanction Russian Federation for the poisoning in Britain.

It confirms that the special counsel has moved beyond the question of whether there was collusion with Trump campaign officials or whether the President obstructed justice by firing Federal Bureau of Investigation chief James Comey in 2017.

While this was Mr. Trump's most significant anti-Russia move, these are the same entities identified by Robert Mueller, the special counsel investigating Russian meddling, in a recent indictment and only add two new senior Russian officials, with ties to military intelligence, to the list Mr. Obama sanctioned in 2016, according to Representative Adam Schiff, the senior Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee.

It was impossible not to see the sanctions unveiled Thursday as an action by his own administration that not only undermined his position but also validated some of the work that Mueller has already done.

Russian Federation and Ukraine have remained in a tug-of-war over Crimea's annexation and Moscow's support for separatist insurgents in eastern Ukraine. They've been accused of dragging their feet in imposing the sanctions that Congress ordered with legislation that was passed nearly unanimously.

Sanders says, "We're going to be tough on Russian Federation until they decide to change their behavior". As far as sanctions, today was a nothing-burger. "What's forthcoming from this administration? So far I'm not impressed".

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