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Senior lawmaker confident Russia to respond to expanded US sanctions

According to Leonid Slutsky, "US arguments do not stand up to scrutiny"

MOSCOW, January 27. /TASS/. The decision to expand sanctions on Moscow, made by the US Department of the Treasury, is a destructive step, which will not go unanswered, Chairman of the Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) Committee on Foreign Affairs Leonid Slutsky told reporters.

"New US sanctions are a destructive step, which exacerbates relations between Russia and the United States," he noted. "It is clear that Washington seeks to achieve its own political goals through unfair competition on global markets," Slutsky added.

According to the senior Russian lawmaker, "US arguments do not stand up to scrutiny." "The US Department of the Treasury claims commitment to the implementation of the Minsk Agreements though Russia is not a party to the domestic conflict in Ukraine. At the same time, we don’t see any reaction to the Donbass reintegration law adopted by the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine’s parliament), which actually derails the Minsk Agreements," Slutsky pointed out. On the contrary, in his words, "millions of dollars worth of military aid has been offered to the Kiev regime, including the delivery of lethal weapons that may be used to kill people in southeastern Ukraine."

"I am sure that we will respond to the new portion of sanctions," Slutsky concluded.

According to earlier reports, the US Department of the Treasury announced the expansion of the list of Russian individuals and companies subject to sanctions imposed on Moscow over the Ukrainian crisis.

The extended list particularly includes individuals and companies allegedly involved in the delivery of the Siemens turbines to Crimea - Alexei Mordashov’s company Power Machines, which has been cooperating with Siemens in the production of turbines, as well as the Technopromexport engineering company (part of the Rostec State Corporation), which is building two power plants in Crimea. Technopromexport Director General Sergei Topor-Gilka, Deputy Energy Minister Andrei Cherezov and Head of the Department of Operational Control and Management in the Electric Power Industry at the Russian Energy Ministry Yevgeny Grabchak are among the blacklisted individuals.