Russia sanctions

What you need to know

Congress passed a bill placing sanctions on Russia in August 2017. It took President Donald Trump more than six months to respond.

The sanctions were in response to:

  • Russia’s interference in the 2016 election

  • Human rights violations

  • The annexation of Crimea

  • Military operations in eastern Ukraine

CNN Digital

They also reduce the president’s power to wave or ease certain sanctions without Congressional approval.

CNN Digital/Aude Guerrucci - Pool/Getty Images

The sanctions target people and entities that:

Undermine US cybersecurity on behalf of the Russian government

CNN Digital

Invest certain amounts in Russia’s energy export pipelines

CNN Digital

Conduct “significant” transactions with Russian defense and intelligence agencies

CNN Digital

Commit, or assist in, serious human rights abuses

CNN Digital

Commit acts of “significant” corruption

CNN Digital

Provide support to the Syrian government to acquire arms

CNN Digital

Invest in assets that unfairly benefit government officials or their associates

Limited to a one-year period of $10 million or more

CNN Digital

The US and the European Union have spearheaded past sanctions against Russia, and other countries have followed suit.

CNN Digital/Michael Klimentyev/AFP/Getty Images

But measuring their impact on Russia’s economy is not an exact science.

What seems clear is that the price of oil — which Russia's economy depends on — has had a far greater impact than sanctions.

CNN Digital/Mikhail Mordasov/AFP/Getty Images

In March 2018, the Trump administration enacted sanctions on Russian entities including the Internet Research Agency, a Russian troll farm that produced divisive political posts on American social media platforms during the 2016 presidential election.

CNN Digital/Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

One month later, Trump slapped sanctions on seven Russian oligarchs with ties to President Vladimir Putin, along with 17 senior Russian officials.