Russia has missed a deadline to swear off use of chemical weapons, the State Department said in a notification to Congress Tuesday, which has triggered a new round of sanctions per the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991.
The Trump administration was required to certify whether Russia has complied with the law's terms and now must choose three of six sanctions options. The new measures may take several weeks to go into effect, though they could be waived if the president determines it is in U.S. national interest to do so.
House Foreign Affairs Committee chair Ed Royce (R-Calif.) chided the Trump administration for failing to provide those implementation details more quickly. "No one should be surprised that [Russian President] Vladimir Putin refuses to swear off future use of weapons-grade nerve agents," he said. "It is unacceptable that the administration lacks a plan — or even a timeline — for action on the second round of mandatory sanctions required by U.S. law."