WASHINGTON – President Biden’s national security adviser said Sunday that in response to the poisoning of Aleksei A. Navalny, the country’s most prominent opposition leader, days after his first face-to-face meeting, the United States was preparing further sanctions against Russia. Summit with President Vladimir V. Putin.
“We are preparing another package of sanctions for this case,” said Jake Sullivan, the national security advisor, in the “State of the Union” of CNN, referring to the treatment of Mr. Navalny.
Mr Sullivan was vague in pushing the timing of the sanctions or their content, saying only that additional measures would come “as soon as we develop the packages to ensure we are achieving the right goals”.
“If we do that,” he said, “we will impose further sanctions on chemical weapons.”
In April, the Biden government imposed its first sanctions on Russia for the poisoning and imprisonment of Mr. Navalny. But these punishments were not specifically directed against Mr. Putin or the oligarchs who support him.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the timing of Mr. Sullivan’s remarks made no difference. “The law requires that we continue to address the sanctions targets related to the use of chemical weapons,” she said, noting that “there has been no change from before the summit to after the summit”.
Mr Biden and Mr Putin both described their three-hour meeting in Geneva on Wednesday as positive, although there was little concrete action other than an agreement to send ambassadors back to each other’s capitals.
After the meeting, Mr Biden told reporters that he was aware of the consequences for Russia if Mr Navalny, who was sentenced to more than two years in prison in February, died in captivity.
“I made it clear to him that I believe the consequences for Russia would be devastating.” Mr. Biden said.
“There has been no hostilities,” Putin said in a separate press conference after the summit. “On the contrary, our meeting took place in a constructive spirit.”
Republicans have criticized the president’s dealings with Russia, claiming that Biden showed weaknesses in his meeting with Putin, finding that he waived sanctions against the company behind Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline to allow its completion.
Mr Sullivan disapproved of this characterization of the meeting, saying the summit was “a study contrary to what happened in Helsinki,” where President Donald J. Trump held his first face-to-face meeting with Mr Putin in 2018, and dismissed the US conclusions -Secret services, Russia interfered in the 2016 elections.
“Privately in the room, President Biden told President Putin that there would be costs and consequences if the harmful activities against the United States continued,” Sullivan told Fox News Sunday, adding that the United States is US $ 150 million -Dollars in security aid to Ukraine a week before the summit.
“He entered and left this summit in Geneva as the leader of the free world,” said Sullivan, “a coat that Donald Trump gave away and that Joe Biden recaptured on behalf of this country.”