Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev speaks during a meeting in Kamchatka Peninsula region, Russian Far East, Russia, Friday, Aug. 10, 2018. Russia's prime minister sternly warned the United States on Friday against ramping up sanctions, saying that Moscow will retaliate with economic, political and unspecified "other" means. (Dmitry Astakhov, Sputnik, Government Pool Photo via AP)

New US sanctions could pitch Russia relations to new low

August 11, 2018 - 8:20 am

WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia typically brushes off new U.S. sanctions. Not this time.

The Trump administration announcement of export restrictions in response to accusations Moscow used a nerve agent to poison a former Russian spy in Britain sent the ruble tumbling to a two-year low and drew a stern warning from its prime minister.

While the initial sanctions may have a limited impact, a second batch expected within months could hit the Russian economy much harder and send already tense relations into a tailspin.

So much for President Donald Trump's hopes for better relations with Moscow.

On his watch, the U.S. has imposed a slew of sanctions on Russia, but for the most part they haven't targeted broad economic sectors. The sanctions announced this past week could start to change that equation.

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