U.S. vows ‘consequences’ for Russia's actions
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said officials "are in the process” of considering what sanctions or actions Washington plans to take against Russia.
"We will take the steps necessary to defend our interests" at the time of the U.S.’s choosing, Blinken said in a CNN interview that aired Sunday but was taped last week as he completed talks with other NATO diplomats in Brussels.
"And we’ve seen across the board these different examples of Russia’s aggression... And the President [Joe Biden] has been very clear that there will be consequences for these acts. And we are in the process of completing reviews of the cyber attack through SolarWinds on us, the interference in the election, the use of a chemical weapon to try to murder Alexey Navalny – we’ve already spoken and acted on that – the bounties on U.S. forces in Afghanistan," the diplomat listed.
The authorities have repeatedly denied Russia's involvement in these actions.
"And there will be costs and consequences. And I think you’re seeing as well – and what I heard here at NATO was a shared concern about Russia’s actions across the board and a shared commitment to stand together against them," he added.
Blinken noted that whether it’s with regard to Russia, whether it’s regard to other countries that "pose a challenge", "we are stronger and more effective when we’re able to do it in a coordinated fashion."
"At the same time, as we’re very clear-eyed about that, we also find areas where it’s in our mutual interest to try to cooperate. We extended the New START Nuclear Arms Reduction Treaty, one of the first things we did. There are other areas in the realm of so-called strategic stability where we might find ways to work together because it’s in our mutual interest. But it really starts with being clear-eyed about the challenge that Russia poses and addressing that challenge together," the top U.S. diplomat stressed.