Trump Tried to Lift Anti-Russian Sanctions in First Weeks of Presidency
President of the USA Donald Trump attempted to lift anti-Russian sanctions shortly after taking office, but failed due to fierce resistance by the previous administration officials, Yahoo News reported, citing informed sources.
According to Yahoo News, straight after the inauguration of the newly elected president, Trump administration officials tasked State Department employees with developing proposals for the abolition of economic sanctions, the return of diplomatic contacts and other measures to mend ties with Kremlin.
"There was serious consideration by the White House to unilaterally rescind the sanctions", said Dan Fried, a veteran State Department official who served as chief US coordinator for sanctions policy until he retired in late February. The former State Department official said that in the first few weeks of the new administration, he received several "panicky" calls from US government officials who told him they had been directed to develop a sanctions-lifting package and imploring him, "Please, my God, can’t you stop this?"
Another official, former assistant President Obama's secretary of state for human rights Tom Malinowski reported he was among those who turned to the Congress. He was alarmed by the administration’s plans to lift sanctions and possibly arrange a meeting between Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
It is very sad that the officials of the former administration are preventing the new US leader to improve relations with Moscow. In many ways, such a step would help reduce the level of confrontation in the world and search for a mutually acceptable compromise.