President Trump on Monday halted a preliminary plan to impose additional economic sanctions on Russia hours after his Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said they were forthcoming, a bombshell new report reveals.
Haley appeared on CBS News’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday to announce that sanctions on Russian companies behind the equipment related to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s alleged chemical weapons attack would be announced Monday by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
She said the sanctions would target “any sort of companies related to [Syrian President Bashar] Assad and chemical weapons use.”
The Washington Post reports that preparations to punish Russia with additional sanctions “caused consternation at the White House.”
The Post reports:
But Trump conferred with his national security advisers later Sunday and told them he was upset the sanctions were being officially rolled out because he was not yet comfortable executing them, according to several people familiar with the plan.
Administration officials said the economic sanctions were under serious consideration, along with other measures that could be taken against Russia, but said Trump had not given final authorization to implement them. Administration officials said Monday it was unlikely Trump would approve any additional sanctions without another triggering event by Russia, describing the strategy as being in a holding pattern.
The paper reported that sometime after Haley’s appearance on “Face the Nation,” the Trump administration notified “the Russian Embassy in Washington that the sanctions were not in fact coming, a Russian Foreign Ministry official said Monday.”
The White House on Monday morning said the Trump administration is “considering additional sanctions on Russia and a decision will be made in the near future.”