US leadership may use terror sponsor label against Russia
Donald Trump has ordered the leadership of two key US intelligence agencies — the CIA and the National Security Agency — to disclose the available information to the United States Congress on the alleged collusion of Russia’s military intelligence and the Taliban.
Nevertheless, without waiting for a briefing by any intelligence agency, the Democrats demanded sanctions against Russia. According to Nezavisimaya Gazeta, Washington might brand Russia as a country that sponsors terrorism.
It is easy to assume what kind of sanctions may be rolled out against Russia, the newspaper wrote. In June, the Republican Study Committee (RSC), a caucus of conservative members of the Republican Party in the US House of Representatives, presented a report to the lower house of Congress.
The document states that all the measures that the American authorities took to contain Russia failed to bear any fruit. Therefore, Republican congressmen consider it necessary to introduce new sanctions — in particular, the report proposes cutting off Russia from SWIFT, imposing sanctions against Russian sovereign debt, and punishing Russia’s allies in the former USSR.
According to chief researcher at the Institute of US and Canada Studies Vladimir Vasiliev, there are a lot of chances for the bill recognizing Russia as a sponsor of terrorism to be adopted early. This will happen if, of course, American intelligence actually digs up and presents some evidence indicating that Russia was in collusion with the Taliban. At the moment, Iran, Sudan, Syria, and North Korea are designated as nations that sponsor terrorism in the United States.
This status makes it possible to slap a number of special sanctions on them: for example, banning sales of dual-use goods. Finally, victims of terrorism may file lawsuits against countries that sponsor terrorism with US courts. So, relatives of American soldiers who died in Afghanistan will have the right to sue Russia and seize its property and the property of citizens of Russia, which will be in the reach of the American justice system.
Amendments to the Russian Constitution approved by most Russian voters will require changes to roughly 70 laws, a working group on the Constitution told Izvestia. According to the estimates of the Federation Council, about 90 regulatory legal acts may be changed.
These issues will be discussed at a meeting of the working group with President Vladimir Putin on Friday, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed. Meanwhile, the Central Election Commission summed up the final results of the nationwide vote, indicating that 77.92% of Russians supported the amendments.
The adopted amendments require a detailed study of industry-specific laws. This will help avoid possible conflicts and legal uncertainty, Co-Chair of the Working Group to Draft Proposals on Amending the Constitution Andrei Klishas told Izvestia.
These and other issues will be discussed at a meeting of the constitutional working group with the participation of the president, member of the working group Yaroslav Nilov told the newspaper. “It is obvious that the adopted changes will serve as an impulse for adjusting the legal framework. In total, it is planned to change about 70 laws,” Nilov said. Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed that the meeting is scheduled for July 3.
The final voting results have been counted and the changes were supported by 77.92%, while 21.27% voted against, with a total voter turnout of 67.97%. This clearly shows that Russians are extremely interested in participating in the political process, Klishas told Izvestia.
The procedures helped spur the activity of the population. “Increasing the number of days for voting from one to several is good experience, but that needs to be further studied and summarized,” Klishas believes.
The experiment with the new multi-day ballot system and distance voting turned out to be very successful, General Director of the Russian Public Opinion Research Center Valery Fedorov told Izvestia. Not only did a simplified procedure ensure such active participation, but people voted because they found in the package of laws something important for themselves, the expert said. For example, many people are concerned about social guarantees. Of course, the pandemic also made its contribution, since the routine of the recent months has spurred some to go to the polls, the expert added.