Dmitry Medvedev, Russia’s prime minister, said that the sanctions are tantamount to a “full-scale trade war,” adding in a Facebook post that they portray the Trump administration had demonstrated “utter powerlessness”, stating, “The hope that our relations with the new American administration would improve is finished”.

In a message to legislator’s, President Trump said: “While I favour tough measures to punish and deter aggressive and destabilising behaviour by Iran, North Korea, and Russia, this legislation is significantly flawed”.

The new law allows Congress to prevent any further effort by the US President to ease sanctions on Russia. It is a move that does not bode well for those in the Republican party who are aiming to reach more amicable levels of communication between Moscow and Washington.

The new legislation has prompted countermeasures by the Russian President Vladimir Putin, who stated on Sunday that the US diplomatic mission in Russia must cut its staff by 755 people. Russia is also seizing two properties near Moscow that is used by American diplomats.

The legislation has proved unpopular with the European Union, which believes  new sanctions might affect its energy security and prompt retaliatory action; it includes sanctions on foreign companies investing in or helping Russian energy exploration, although the president could waive those sanctions.

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