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Barack Obama to sign Russia sanctions bill, says White House

The White House on Friday said US President Barack Obama will sign the Russia sanctions bill as it again appealed to Moscow to "end its occupation and attempted annexation of Crimea and cease support for separatists in eastern Ukraine".



Washington: The White House on Friday said US President Barack Obama will sign the Russia sanctions bill as it again appealed to Moscow to "end its occupation and attempted annexation of Crimea and cease support for separatists in eastern Ukraine".

"The President does intend to sign H R 5859 (Russia sanctions bill) into law. Signing the legislation does not, however, signal a change in the administration's sanctions policy which we have carefully calibrated in accordance with developments on the ground and coordinated with our allies and partners, principally in Europe," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.

At this time, the administration does not intend to impose sanctions under this law, but the act gives the administration additional authorities that could be utilised if circumstances warrant it, he said.

"This administration will continue to work closely with allies and partners in Europe and internationally to respond to developments in Ukraine. And we'll continue to review and calibrate our sanctions to respond to Russia's actions," the spokesperson said.

"The United States again calls on Russia to end its occupation and attempted annexation of Crimea, cease support for separatists in eastern Ukraine, and implement the obligations that it signed up to commit to under the Minsk agreements," Earnest said.

"our goal is to promote a diplomatic solution that provides a lasting resolution to the conflict and helps promote growth and stability in Ukraine and regionally, including in Russia," he said.

"In this context, the United States continues to call on Russia's leadership to implement the Minsk agreements and to reach a lasting and comprehensive resolution to the conflict which respects Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

"The United States, if Russia acts accordingly, remains prepared to roll back sanctions should Russia take the necessary steps," Earnest said.

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