The U.S. Senate overwhelmingly approved new financial sanctions against Russian Federation on Wednesday for its interference in the 2016 presidential election and actions taken in Syria and Europe, according to media reports.
"By codifying existing sanctions and requiring Congressional review of any decision to weaken or lift them, we are ensuring that the United States continues to punish President Putin for his reckless and destabilizing actions", Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement.
The Senate passed the bill, which also includes additional sanctions on Iran, by an overwhelming 98-2 vote with Sens.
The measure is meant to punish Russian Federation for meddling in the 2016 USA election, its annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region and support for Syria's government in the six-year-long civil war.
A day earlier on Wednesday, the Senate added another set of sanctions on Russian Federation for meddling in last year's usa election, its reunification with Crimea and support for Syria's government in that country's six-year-long conflict.
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The Senate is expected to hold its final vote on the legislation as early as this week.
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The initial Iran bill imposes sanctions on any foreign person or foreign entity that does business with an entity already designated by the administration that has a connection to Iran's ballistic missile program. The libertarian-minded Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was the only other "no" vote against the bill.
"I'm concerned about it, but I don't really have the ability to dictate what the White House says to the House", Sen.
"We do project ourselves strongly into this issue, Congress does, the Senate does, but we also left flexibilities for them to be able to manage foreign policy", he said.
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If the legislation passes the House, it would head to Trump for signing. Brown also said the veto-proof vote on the sanctions package should send a strong signal to the White House.
"It's time to respond to Russia's attack on American democracy with strength, with resolve, with common goal, and with action", said Republican Senator John McCain. Paul's vote was unsurprising, as he'd also opposed yesterday's amendment on adding Russian Federation sanctions to the bill. Sen.
"What we have heard from experts in the intel community: They've warned us that if Russian Federation gets a pass on this, that it will interfere in future USA elections", Shaheen says.
It remained unknown whether Trump, who had been seeking rapprochement with Russian Federation for months, would sign the bill into law.
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