TIME russia

U.S. Escalating Economic Sanctions Against Russia

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. officials say the Obama administration is levying deeper sanctions on Russia as the West grapples for a way to quell an insurgency in eastern Ukraine widely believed to be backed by Moscow.

The sanctions are expected to target key areas of the Russian economy, including the defense industry. But officials say the penalties stop short of fully cutting off sectors of the Russian economy, a step the U.S. is holding in reserve in case Moscow launches a full-scale invasion of Ukraine or takes similarly provocative actions.

The U.S. penalties come as officials in Europe weigh whether to levy their own tougher sanctions on Russia.

The officials insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the penalties publicly by name ahead of the official announcement.

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