03:50 GMT23 January 2021
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    US House Republicans have proposed adding North Korea sanctions to a bill targeting Russia and Iran, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Friday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — "I believe Iran, the work that Russia has done, and what North Korea has done, it would be a very strong statement for all of America to get that sanction bill completed and done and to the president's desk," McCarthy said during a debate on the House floor.

    Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker reportedly said that both he and his House counterpart Ed Royce were willing to add the North Korea sanctions to the Russia-Iran package.

    "Chairman Royce and I have discussed the desire of some House members to add North Korea provisions to the Senate's legislation to sanction Iran and Russia, and we would be more than glad to take a close look at it if this is the path they choose," Corker told The Hill.

    The US Senate passed a Russia-Iran sanctions bill on June 15 with a 98-2 vote, but the legislation was flagged by the House as a "blue slip" violation.

    According to the US Constitution, any bill that raises revenue for the US government must originate in the House of Representatives. When such bills originate in the Senate, they are known as "blue slip" violations.

    House Democrats on Thursday introduced identical legislation to what was already passed by the Senate. They then called on the House to quickly pass the bill back to the Senate.

    But if the House adds North Korea sanctions to the bill, the Senate will have to debate the amended parts of the legislation before passing it.

    The bill, which censures Iran over its ballistic missile program, also slaps new sanctions on Russia over Moscow’s alleged interference in the US presidential election in 2016.

    The legislation targets Russia's defense, intelligence, mining, shipping and railway industries and restricts dealings with Russian banks and energy companies. It also limits the US president's ability to ease any sanctions on Russia by requiring Congress' approval to lift any restrictions.

    Russian officials have repeatedly denied allegations that Moscow meddled in the US election.


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