White House committed to anti-Russian sanctions - spokesperson

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According to Politico, a senior administration official stated that the "White House is concerned that the legislation would tie its hands on U.S. -Russia relations".

The Senate on June 15 voted 98-2 to pass the legislation, which will now be sent to the House of Representatives for approval before being sent to Trump for his signature.

The only two votes against the Russia-Iran sanctions deal came from GOP Sens.

Finally, it provides that no sanctions can be lifted by the President without Congressional review.

The Russian provisions would add people involved in the alleged Russian hacking attacks on the United States election to the sanctions list and impose penalties for delivery of weapons to the Syrian regime, hitting areas of the Russian economy such as mining and the energy sector. The Trump administration had considered lifting Russian sanctions in the past, and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson opposed the new legislation, worrying it could hurt the US' ability to have a "constructive dialogue" with Russia.

Dan Fried, who retired in February as coordinator for sanctions policy at the State Department, told Yahoo News that there was "serious consideration" by the Trump White House to "unilaterally rescind the sanctions".

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"This is a very, very strong piece of legislation", Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Bob Corker said on the Senate floor.

"What I wouldn't want to do is close the channels off", Tillerson told a Senate committee.

"We will keep them in place until Moscow fully honors its commitment to resolve the crisis in Ukraine", Sanders said. The State Department has said that talks are ongoing with Russian Federation over the possible return of the compounds, underscoring the Trump administration's interest in securing more cooperation from Moscow in ending the Syrian civil war.

"I called over myself yesterday and just shared some thoughts with them". The first was a technical change that the sanctions would not apply to NASA and commercial space launches, as Russian rocket engines are used for the American Atlas V and Antares rockets.

In another challenge to Trump's foreign policy, the measure also "reaffirm the strategic importance" of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

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