Putin has not yet ordered retaliatory sanctions against United States

Russian rouble

After their last meeting in Helsinki in July, Trump saw a wave of criticism at home for failing to confront Putin publicly over Moscow's interference in the 2016 USA election, and for seeming to contradict his own intelligence agencies on the threat from Russian Federation.

Russia-U.S. confrontation is extending to the economic and trade field as Washington is poised to slap new and powerful sanctions in a move Moscow views as the declaration of an "economic war".

On Friday, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Russian Federation would regard any USA move to curb the activities of its banks as a "declaration of economic war" and would take retaliatory action.

Mr Trump weathered fierce criticism after his summit last week with Mr Putin in Helsinki after he appeared to give credence to the Russian leader's assertion that Moscow did not interfere in the 2016 United States presidential election.

This month, the Senate introduced legislation that would expand sanctions even further to target Russia's top state-controlled banks and freeze their dollar transactions.

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Peskov said Trump's criticism was aimed at promoting sales of U.S. LNG to Europe and the Kremlin considered this to be a manifestation of unfair competition.

They could be followed by a second more punitive round of measures if the administration is unable to certify that Russian Federation is no longer using chemical weapons or provide "reliable assurances" that it will not do so in future.

In its statement, the Russian Embassy in Washington accused the USA of failing to provide any justification for the action. We can not guarantee that it is suitable for the visually or hearing impaired. The American side refused to answer our follow-up questions, claiming that the information is classified.

It added: "We confirmed that we continue to strongly stand for an open and transparent investigation of the crime committed in Salisbury and for bringing the culprits to justice".

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov attends a news conference of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron in St. Petersburg, Russia May 24, 2018.

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