MOSCOW: The Vladimir Putin government in Russia is said to be planning a major retaliation against the United States, a week after the Donald Trump Administration ordered fresh sanctions against Russia escalating tensions between the two nuclear powered-states.
According to the Sunday Express, sources in Kremlin have confirmed that the Putin government is working on retaliatory measures to hit back at the Trump Administration for announcing the fresh sanctions against Moscow.
Earlier this month, the Trump Administration had added 38 Russian entrepreneurs, senior officials and firms to its sanctions list as part of its effort to crackdown on the country’s “malign activity” taking place across the globe.
''I will not announce anything, we are working on that, '' Russian Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov was quoted as saying.
In the aftermath of the US announcement, a firm response to the White House from the Putin government was already anticipated and a bill outlining the potential reactionary measures was presented to the Russian Parliament earlier this week.
The Bill considered measures such as banning imports of US agricultural, alcoholic, and tobacco products as well as medical drugs. But after Russian Transport Minister Sokolov's announcement, it is almost clear that the Russians are indeed planning a tough response to the US.
All this comes at a time when the relations between Washington DC and Moscow have reached the lowest levels after the suspected poisoning of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal on the UK soil.
Russian state television has, meanwhile, cautioned the citizens of the country to prepare for World War III, the US has, without mincing words, declared that it is “locked and loaded” to strike Syria again if President Bashar Assad's regime continues using chemical weapons and poisonous gas in the war-torn country.
The statement issuing World War III warning appeared on Russian state media after the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) rejected a resolution by Russia calling for condemnation of "aggression" by the United States, United Kingdom and France against Syria.
Russia's demand for condemnation and an immediate halt to "aggression" and "any further use of force" by the three Western allies got support from only two other countries on the 15-member Security Council - China and Bolivia.
Eight countries voted against the Russian draft - the US, UK, France, Netherlands, Sweden, Kuwait, Poland and Ivory Coast while four countries - Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, Equatorial Guinea and Peru - abstained.
The US, UK and France said they launched air strikes against Syrian chemical sites after obtaining evidence that a chemical weapon was used by President Bashar Assad's government. Russia and its ally Syria called the attack fabricated and said no evidence of chemical weapons use exists in Douma.