U.S. Senate publishes bill on new sanctions against Russia

13:32, 27 February 2019
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"Mr. Graham (for himself, Mr. Menendez, Mr. Gardner, Mr. Cardin, and Mrs. Shaheen) introduced the following bill [on February 13]; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations," the U.S. Congress said.

According to the bill, not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2019, the President shall prescribe regulations prohibiting United States persons from engaging in transactions with, providing financing for, or otherwise dealing in, Russian sovereign debt issued on or after the date that is 90 days after such date of enactment. In this section, the term "Russian sovereign debt" means bonds issued by the Central Bank, the National Wealth Fund, or the Federal Treasury of the Russian Federation, or agents or affiliates of any of those entities, with a maturity of more than 14 days.

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"On and after the date that is 90 days after the date of the enactment of the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2019, the President shall impose the sanctions described in section 224(b)(1) with respect to any Russian financial institution that the President determines has, on or after such date of enactment, provided financial or other support for interference by the Government of the Russian Federation in the democratic process or elections of any country other than the Russian Federation," the bill says.

"On and after the date that is 180 days after the date of the enactment of the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2019, the President shall impose the sanctions described in section 224(b) with respect to – political figures, oligarchs, and other persons that facilitate illicit and corrupt activities, directly or indirectly, on behalf of the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, and persons acting for or on behalf of such political figures, oligarchs, and persons."

Moreover, "on and after the date that is 180 days after the date of the enactment of the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2019, the President shall impose five or more of the sanctions described in section 239E with respect to a person if the President determines that the person knowingly, on or after such date of enactment, makes an investment described in subsection (b) in a liquefied natural gas export facility located outside of the Russian Federation. An investment described in this subsection is an investment that – directly and significantly contributes to the ability of the Russian Federation to construct liquefied natural gas export facilities outside of the Russian Federation; and has a fair market value of $1,000,000 or more; or during a 12-month period, has an aggregate fair market value of $5,000,000 or more."

The bill also includes sanctions for violations by the Russian Federation of freedom of navigation.

"Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of the Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2019, and every 180 days thereafter, the Secretary of State shall determine and certify to the committees specified in subsection (d) whether the Government of the Russian Federation, including the armed forces or coast guard of the Russian Federation, has interfered with the freedom of navigation of one or more vessels in the Kerch Strait or elsewhere in a manner inconsistent with international law during the 180 days preceding the certification," it said.

It is also reported the Senate opposes any effort to withdraw the United States from the North Atlantic Treaty, done at Washington, DC, April 4, 1949.

What is more, not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Director of National Intelligence shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a detailed report on the personal net worth and assets of the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, according to the bill.

"Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State, in coordination with the Director of National Intelligence, shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees and leadership a report detailing the circumstances of the assassination on February 27, 2015, of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov," the bill reads.

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