President Barack Obama said Thursday that additional sanctions against Russia are “teed up” and could be implemented in a matter of days.
The remarks, given at a press conference in Japan, are the latest warning that the U.S. is prepared to ramp up pressure on Russia as the crisis in Ukraine deepens.
“The fact that I haven’t announced them yet doesn’t mean they haven’t been prepared and teed up,” Obama said. Earlier this week, the U.S. announced that American troops would be deployed to eastern Europe for drills.
Obama added that sanctions may not change “Putin’s calculus,” and he called on other countries to be part of a collective effort to increase pressure on Russia.
The president said the U.S. hasn’t seen Russia “abide by the spirit or the letter of the agreement in Geneva,” referring to the deescalation agreement the U.S., European union, Russia, and Ukraine agreed to earlier this month.
Obama has faced criticism from the right over his response to the situation in Ukraine, with critics calling his reaction weak and indecisive.
In a press conference of his own, Russian President Vladimir Putin took a swipe at sanctions against his country from the West.
“Doing the things they do in Russia, they simply undermine the trust,” he said of U.S. sanctions, adding that Russia wouldn’t respond with its own sanctions. “But they undermine the trust in themselves, which means they will definitely loose the market. And other companies-partners of ours should think about that.”
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov added in a press conference, “I am sure that our American colleagues should use all their influence to make the current Kiev authorities not only to acknowledge their responsibility for the situation, but also to put it into practice,” Russian foreign minster Sergey Lavrov said on Thursday.