(Politico) The Trump administration on Friday sanctioned seven oligarchs with close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, including Putin’s son-in-law and businessmen with links to the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, further widening the gap between Trump's rhetoric and actions towards Russia.
Included on the sanctions list is Oleg Deripaska, a billionaire connected to former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who is now under indictment for money laundering charges. Manafort’s relationship with Deripaska is under scrutiny from special counsel Robert Mueller.
The sanctions are sure to heighten tensions between Russia and the U.S., which have escalated even as Trump himself makes diplomatic overtures to Putin. Last month, Trump congratulated Putin on his win in an election widely viewed as a sham and invited the Russian leader to the White House. Days later, the administration expelled 60 Russian diplomats in response to a nerve agent attack on a Russian ex-spy and his daughter in Britain.
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