Interfax: Moscow’s response to “mirror” U.S. sanctions, asymmetric measures being considered – Russian diplomat Sergei Ryabkov

Sergei Ryabkov file photo

MOSCOW/VIENNA. March 20 (Interfax) – Moscow may draft its own “blacklist” of American officials as part of a response that will “mirror” the sanctions imposed by the United States on Russia, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said.

“If Washington restarts measures to escalate tensions and confrontation, as well as attempts to tell us what we should do using the instruments of sanctions, our side’s response to this will not obviously be restricted only to personal targeted sanctions dealing with certain individuals,” Ryabkov told Interfax over the phone from Vienna.

“We are considering a wide range of possible responses. They may include “mirror” measures such as the drafting the certain lists of American officials – not necessarily representatives of the administration, but also representatives of other structures that influence American policies – in response to the sanctions that were declared in relation to Russian high-ranking officials representing the executive branch of power and our parliamentarians. This will obviously happen. I do not doubt that such a response will follow,” he said.

“Apart from a purely “mirror” response, there is a chance that we may take asymmetric measures, in other words a response in the form of steps that, let’s put it this way, will matter and will not go unnoticed by Washington because there is a whole number of areas of our dialogue and certain contacts, cooperation to a certain extent, that are important to the American side,” the deputy foreign minister said.

The full version of Ryabkov’s interview will be published on the www.interfax.ru website.