Biden Considers Additional Sanctions Against Russia Following Navalny’s Death

In the wake of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny’s death, President Joe Biden announced on Monday that the United States is contemplating imposing further sanctions on Russia. Speaking to reporters upon his return to the White House, Biden expressed the government’s ongoing concerns, stating, “We already have sanctions, but we are considering additional sanctions, yes.” The announcement comes days after Navalny’s death was reported by Russian prison authorities, who claimed the dissident lost consciousness “almost immediately” after feeling unwell during a walk. Navalny’s widow, Yulia Navalnaya, has accused the Kremlin of poisoning her husband and obstructing the release of his body to his family.

President Biden directly blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for Navalny’s death, highlighting the uncertain circumstances surrounding the incident but emphasizing it as a result of actions taken by “Putin and his thugs.” The U.S. has already implemented several rounds of sanctions against Russian officials, businesses, and institutions in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine two years ago. Biden’s remarks underscore the gravity of the situation and the potential for escalating tensions between the U.S. and Russia.

The possibility of increased sanctions reflects the U.S. administration’s effort to address the threat posed by Russia, with Biden urging Congress to allocate more funding to Ukraine. Despite his calls for action, Biden expressed uncertainty regarding the impact of Navalny’s death on persuading House Republicans to vote on additional aid for Ukraine. The President lamented the lack of response, stating, “I hope so, but I’m not sure anything’s going to change their minds,” and criticized their inaction as a “big mistake.”

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