In less than a week after the Putin-Biden summit in Geneva, Washington has announced the preparation of new sanctions against Russia. It appears interesting how the Kremlin commented on the news.
A couple of days ago, US President National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan stated that the White House was preparing another package of restrictions due to the situation with Russian opposition activist and blogger Alexei Navalny.
White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said earlier that the law required the White House to continue to consider restrictions related to the alleged use of chemical weapons. Washington imposed a portion of such sanctions several months ago against a number of Russian companies and research institutions.
In addition, Sullivan pledged that the US authorities would continue taking action against Russian companies involved in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova commented the information about the new sanctions.
"When did the United States start living within the law? The way the Americans operate in the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons does not fall under any law — this is complete lawlessness. First, let them punish themselves with sanctions for Yugoslavia and Iraq, for millions of those who were killed and maimed. It will be then when they can say the word 'law'," she wrote in her Telegram channel.
Russian ambassador Anatoly Antonov, who returned to Washington, said that sanctions were not the message that the presidents sent after the summit.
Interestingly, the Kremlin commented on the information about the new sanctions. Putin's official spokesman Dmitry Peskov demonstrated ultimate restraint in his comments.
Journalists asked him whether the Kremlin would draw conclusions about the "failure" of the Geneva summit after the United States imposes even more sanctions on Russia in the future. To which Peskov replied:
"This is a very primitive position. Interstate relations, especially relations that go through such a difficult period, between the two largest powers of the world, are, of course, much more complex and contradictory. Therefore, a more balanced and serious assessment is required here."
Putin's spokesman, so to speak, showed an understanding of the situation, in which Joe Biden found himself:
"We are aware of possible sanctions that have been codified. The fact is that some sanctions are codified and their implementation does not even depend on the will of the US President. In terms of its sanctions aspirations and such sanctions dependence, Washington is demonstrating constancy and unpredictability at the same time," Peskov said.
According to him, the Americans said that they wanted predictability and stability in relations with Russia, "and we have said the same many times — we do need predictability."
One could see that Dmitry Peskov was trying to avoid harsh assessments of the possible actions of the American administration.
According to him, "the nuances of these sanctions depend only on the head of state in the United States — the sanctions themselves must be in accordance with the law, but which ones will be chosen depends on the head of state."
"We have seen over the years the heads of states could agree on one thing and then implement differently," he said, adding that "hopefully this time it would be different."
It is worthy of note that Russia is not exploding the United States from the list of unfriendly countries. There are no prerequisites for this, Dmitry Peskov said.