Russia is preparing a mirror reply to the latest broadening of the anti-Russian restrictions by the US, says Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov. He added that those who initiated the confrontation are “playing with fire.”
“On our side from the very beginning we are maintaining parity on the number of persons listed on sanctions registers. So this time we will add another group of American figures to our blacklist,” Ryabkov told RIA Novosti regarding the recent broadening of the US sanctions list by two organizations and 14 people.
The diplomat emphasized that the move is neither Russia’s choice nor its preferred method, saying Russia does not want to completely shut down the dialogue with the United States as it considers some normalization of relations in future as being possible.
“We are doing this only because of American political stubbornness and their unpreparedness to face reality. Other steps from our side are still possible and we will gauge them in accordance with our own interests. And, of course, with the necessity not to completely shut the window that would allow at least to start the process of stabilizing our bilateral relations with Washington, as a lot of things in the modern world really depend on them,” Ryabkov said.
“The fact that is worth contemplating about is also that by destroying the Russian-US relations our opponents across the ocean are playing with fire, because at the same time with this they are destabilizing the global equilibrium,” he said.
Earlier this week, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova called the new anti-Russian restrictions introduced by the US “absurd” because they implied that just over a dozen people had successfully confronted all the American special agencies with their multibillion-dollar budgets.