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Trump Files Sanctions Order To Fight Election Interference

Trump Files Sanctions Order To Fight Election Interference

On Wednesday, Trump signed an executive order authorizing sanctions on any country that meddles in elections here in the United States.

The executive order requires the intelligence community and other federal agencies to assess the extent of any foreign interference after every United States election. The order would direct intelligence agencies to assess whether any people or entities interfered. The finding would then be passed to the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security, who would then make a determination within 45 days whether the interference took place and warranted sanctions.

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He described the White House response as broad, including assessments by intelligence, law enforcement and diplomatic arms of the government.

If they determine and find anything that reflects an interference with the elections, they then will report that and automatic sanctions will take effect.

"We haven't seen the intensity of what happened in 2016".

The White House looks set to toughen up against foreign meddling in USA elections. The methodical leaking of sensitive political information will also qualify as interference.

Trump's national security adviser John Bolton denied that harsh reaction to Trump's Helsinki meeting with Putin was partly what spurred the decision to sign the new order.

Potential sanctions could include a block on financial transactions, export license restrictions, restrictions on access to American financial institutions and investments, and restrictions on entry to the US.

"There is no question that protecting our elections from foreign interference is one of the most pressing issues facing our country today", Rubio and Van Hollen said in a joint statement Wednesday.

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"These are very sensitive, very unsafe operations".

The executive order is being framed as an effort to demonstrate strength on the issue of election interference.

Congress passed a financial sanctions bill against the Kremlin over a year ago and since January 2017, over 200 individuals and companies with connections to Russian Federation have been subjected to its penalties.

The order described by a USA official familiar with its drafting as "another tool in the tool kit" to deter election interference by foreign adversaries, according to The Wall Street Journal. If the U.S. determines that any foreign meddling has occurred, the executive order ensures a quick, forceful, and proportionate response, he said.

He said he has spoken to members of Congress in recent weeks but indicated that time is a factor. Those backing the legislation say that under the bill, a nation would know exactly what it would face if caught.

Mueller is also looking into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian officials.

Rogers and the other senior intelligence officials working for both Trump and Obama have routinely affirmed the intelligence community's January 2017 declassified assessment that the senior-most echelons of the Kremlin were behind aggressive attempts to sow chaos and damage trust in elections, with the aim of electing Trump.

The order does not target Russian Federation in particular, but any entity that engages in election meddling. He said the United States is also anxious about the cyber activities of China, North Korea and Iran.

USA intelligence agencies concluded in 2016 that Russian Federation was behind an effort to tip the scale of the U.S. election against Hillary Clinton, with a state-authorised campaign of cyber-attacks and fake news stories planted on social media.

While announcing the new order, Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, said that foreign election meddling could possibly take place before November's vote.


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