Russian Federation is stockpiling gold as fresh sanctions from United States loom

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov

Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov

The US Treasury Department has announced sanctions on several individuals and entities over their involvement with Russian Federation and North Korea.

The weaker rouble usually spurs inflation and curtails economic activity but boosts Russia's budget revenues, since commodities are sold overseas for dollars.

The prospect of another summit between the two leaders has been postponed until next year due to the ongoing investigation into alleged Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and suspicions of collusion between Trump's team and the Kremlin.

Despite the sanctions, Putin said a summit with Trump in Helsinki last month had been useful and praised the benefits of direct dialogue.

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The South Korean government will decide how to handle the issue through consultations with the United States, a government official told reporters.

The latest drop in the value of the Russian currency came amid talk that the US was readying further sanctions.

Tensions with Russian Federation remain high amid the investigation into its interference in the 2016 USA presidential election and whether it colluded with Trump or members of his campaign. In the past decade alone, Russian Federation has mined more than 2,000 tons of gold, with annual production expected to rise by 400 tons by 2030.

"We will not hesitate to do so if its conduct does not demonstrably and significantly change", Mandelker added.

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The U.S. sanctioned owners of six Russian ships over allegations that they are helping transfer refined petroleum products to North Korean vessels in violation of worldwide prohibitions.

But as Congress considers rolling out its own round of sanctions against Russia, which could include restrictions on dollar settlements for Russian banks and purchases of Russian debt issues, Biryukov said the country could start to feel the pain of economic penalties.

In two separate actions Tuesday, the Treasury imposed sanctions on several Russian companies, six vessels and two individuals involved in efforts to undermine those. He will today challenge the European Union to "stand shoulder to shoulder" with the U.S. by imposing new sanctions on Russian Federation over the Salisbury novichok poisoning.

Britain's foreign minister, Jeremy Hunt, will say that Russian President Vladimir Putin has made the world "a more risky place", and that after a chemical weapons attack in England, the European Union should apply more pressure to ensure Russia sticks to worldwide rules.

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