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Additional Sanctions on Russia ‘Valid Option’ if Syria Diplomacy Fails

© Sputnik / Irina Kalashnikova / Go to the photo bankFrench Senate votes to ease sanctions against Russia
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The US government can put additional sanctions on Russia if the Syrian diplomatic process fails, US Department of State deputy spokesperson Mark Toner said in a press briefing on Friday.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Toner explained that Washington already has severe sanctions in place against Moscow because of the Ukrainian crisis.

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He stressed that the United States needs to weigh pressuring Russia’s economy with the ability for the two countries to work together in Syria.

"[That] is another valid option, one among many that we’re looking at," Toner told reporters when asked if Washington would put new sanctions against Russia over the situation in Syria.

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On Wednesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry said in phone talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov that Washington would freeze US-Russian cooperation in Syria unless Moscow persuades Damascus to stop an offensive in Aleppo and reinstate a ceasefire.

In subsequent phone calls on Thursday and Friday, both Kerry and Lavrov stressed that they are ready for additional dialogue to resolve the Syria conflict.

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