US to impose sanctions on Russia over nerve agent attack

U.S. orders new sanctions against Russia over chemical attack in Britain

In late March, Trump ordered 60 more Russian diplomats expelled from the U.S. as part of a global response to the attack - a response that included similar expulsions of diplomats from other nations checking Russia.

The US State Department said the sanctions were in response to "the use of a "Novichok" nerve agent in an attempt to assassinate United Kingdom citizen Sergei Skripal" - a former Russian double agent - and his daughter Yulia.

The U.S. had joined Britain in condemning Russia for the Skripal poisoning and joined with European nations in expelling Russian diplomats in response, but it had yet to make the formal determination that the Russian government had "used chemical or biological weapons in violation of global law or has used lethal chemical or biological weapons against its own nationals".

The new sanctions, details of which were not released, were to take effect following a 15-day Congressional notification period, she said. The Skripals survived being targeted with a Russian-created novichok nerve agent.

A British government spokesman welcomed Washington's announcement, saying: "The strong worldwide response to the use of a chemical weapon on the streets of Salisbury sends an unequivocal message to Russian Federation that its provocative, reckless behavior will not go unchallenged".

Chinese exports accelerate as US prepares new tariffs
July 10: TheUS releases an initial listof an additional $200 billion worth of Chinese goods that could be subject to a 10% tariff. The US and China have been trying to restart high-level talks that broke off after Trump followed through on his tariff threats.

Mr Putin, himself a former KGB spy, said earlier this month Mr Skripal would have been dead if he was attacked with a weapons-grade agent. The measures are scheduled to go into effect on or around August 22, according to the State Department.

They were found in a serious condition on a bench in The Maltings shopping centre, and the discovery of the substance sparked a city-wide investigation with police having to cordon off large areas, including where they had eaten dinner that evening.

One of them, Charlie Rowley, said that he believed the poison came from a bottle of what he thought to be perfume that he found on the ground and gave to his girlfriend, Dawn Sturgess.

A blazing diplomatic row ensued between London and Moscow in the following weeks and months after the Scotland Yard-led investigation attributed blame to Russian Federation. The US still wants to maintain relations with Moscow, despite the new sanctions.

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