President of the United States Donald Trump today (July 2) signed a bill into law that imposes new sanctions on Russia, according to a Whitehouse official.
The Kremlin recently said it was hearing contradictory statements from the White House concerning the sanctions after they were approved by the U.S. Congress.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s said he and President Donald Trump did not believe the new sanctions would “be helpful to our efforts” on diplomacy with Russia.
But the White House also previously confirmed Trump’s intends to sign the sanctions into law.
Asked about Tillerson’s comments, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “It is, of course, important that the President of the United States is thinking about the current state of affairs and about the prospects for bilateral relations in general.
But so far we have not heard any such statements. At the same time, we note there is a certain contradiction in the statements being voiced in the White House.”
Trump has been clear that he wants to improve relations with Russia, a desire that was hampered after the U.S. Congress voted last week by overwhelming margins for sanctions to punish the Russian government over interference in the 2016 presidential election, the annexation of Crimea and other perceived violations of international norms.
US congressional panels and a special counsel are investigating after US intelligence agencies found that Russia interfered to help the Republican against Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Moscow denies any meddling and Trump denies any collusion by his campaign.