Biden readies his first major penalties on Russia

Biden is going to hold Russia accountable for the poisoning and jailing of Navalny. He joins other European countries in levying sanctions against Russia for human right’s abuses. He who will not be named did nothing. #AllRoadsLeadToPutin #Fresh #OneV1

Biden readies his first major penalties on Russia Photo

The U.S. is preparing to respond to Russia’s poisoning and jailing of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, and is expected to coordinate a sanctions rollout with European allies in the coming weeks, according to people familiar with the matter.

The response would mark a break with the previous administration, which prepared a sanctions package following Navalny’s poisoning but never implemented it, the people said. It would also constitute the new administration’s first major step in holding Russia accountable for human rights abuses, which Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken have listed as a key pillar of their foreign policy agenda.

A senior administration official declined to comment on any specific elements of the response, but reiterated that “we are considering available policy options.”

Navalny’s poisoning by Russian security forces last August and his recent jailing in Moscow has been deemed urgent enough to warrant a response, even if the broader review of U.S.-Russia policy — launched by the administration in January — is still ongoing, said the people familiar with the internal discussions.

Several Russia experts have said the U.S. should not wait to respond, especially after a Russian court paved the way last week for Navalny to be transferred to a penal colony.

“They’re right to do this broader review, but on Navalny they should take action sooner,” said Daniel Fried, who served as assistant secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the State Department from 2005 to 2009.

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