US sanctions China for buying Russian fighter jets, missiles

Pauline Gross
September 21, 2018

President Donald Trump then signed an executive order authorizing the sanctions.

China's Foreign Ministry asked the reconsider the sanctions.

"Today's actions are not meant to undermine the military capabilities or combat readiness of any country", the State Department said in a statement, "but rather to impose costs on Russian Federation in response to its interference in the United States election process, its unacceptable behavior in eastern Ukraine, and other malign activities".

Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said Beijing has lodged stern complaints with Washington over the action, which triggers a ban on entering the USA, forbids conducting transactions with the US financial system and forces the blocking of all property and interests in property within US jurisdiction.

A federal special counsel is leading a criminal investigation of Russian interference in the USA election, and any possible cooperation with Trump's presidential campaign. "They are aimed at imposing costs on Russian Federation in response to its malign activities".

We took these actions because China took delivery of 10 Sukhoi fighter aircraft, specifically Su-25s, in December of 2017, after the CAATSA statute came into force.

Officials said it was the first time a third country has been punished under the CAATSA sanctions legislation for dealing with Russian Federation, and signalled the Trump administration's will to risk relations with other countries in its campaign against Moscow.

The sanctions trigger a ban on the individuals from entering the United States, forbids them from transactions with the USA financial system and blocks all property that is within U.S. jurisdiction.

Moscow denies any effort to meddle in us politics, although Vladimir Putin admitted at a summit this summer with Trump that he wanted the Republican to prevail in the 2016 election over Hillary Clinton. "I am sure that these contracts will be executed in line with the schedule", said Franz Klintsevich, according to BBC.

China's Equipment Development Department (EDD) is the branch of the Chinese military responsible for weapons and equipment.

China relies less on large big-ticket purchases from Russian Federation, but Chinese defense industries are seeking expertise from Russian Federation and former-Soviet states to plug knowledge gaps, he said.

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United States officials said that the U.S. could consider similar action against other countries taking delivery of Russian fighter jets and missiles.

"Both countries are opposed to what they see as USA bullying and these kind of actions will just push Beijing and Moscow even closer together", he said, adding that Moscow needed Chinese money and Beijing wanted advanced military technology.

The Trump administration is pursuing strategies to clamp down on China and faces growing pressure to respond strongly to USA intelligence agency reports that Russian Federation is continuing to meddle in US politics.

From a USA perspective, the problem was that Beijing bought these components from Russia's state arms export agency, which was already on a US blacklist.

Who is affected by the sanctions?

U.S. officials said it was the first time a third country has been punished under the CAATSA sanctions legislation for dealing with Russian Federation, signalling Donald Trump's administration will risk relations with other countries in its campaign against Moscow.

Similar action against other countries would be considered, Washington added.

The official declined to answer if the U.S. would take similar action if Russian Federation delivers S400 missiles to other countries such as Turkey, which is in talks to buy them.

US officials have warned that Turkey's purchase of the system could contravene CAATSA.

"We hope that at least this step will send a signal of our seriousness and perhaps encourage others to think twice about their own engagement with the Russian defense and intelligence sectors", another USA official said.

Other reports by GizPress

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