The potential move to label Russia a sponsor of terrorism would have serious consequences, the Kremlin has warned.
If the hawks in the US Congress get their way and have Washington designate Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism, it would likely result in a complete breakdown of diplomatic relations between the two nations, the Ministry of Defense warned on Tuesday. Foreign Relations of Russia.
“If the people in Washington decide to completely stop any interaction with Moscow, we can live with that. There should be no doubt about it.” ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told reporters during a news conference.
The idea of adding Russia to the blacklist, which already includes Iran, North Korea, Syria and Cuba, is supported by some lawmakers, such as Senator Lindsey Graham. Last week, the Senate passed a nonbinding resolution urging the US State Department to take such action.
A similar move by the House is strongly advocated by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who drew media attention this week due to her possible visit to Taiwan. China called the trip a serious provocation.
“I hope the flying speaker returns to her base of operations soon and discusses [branding Russia a sponsor of terrorism] with people who have at least some interest in how the trade of diplomacy works.” Zakharova commented.
State Department resists calling Russia ‘sponsor of terrorism’: NYT
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has reportedly resisted calls from Capitol Hill and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky for Russia to be designated as a terrorist. The White House argued that such a move would have no practical effect in terms of sanctions against Russia that the United States is willing to impose and could backfire in a number of ways.
Zakharova said that if the United States labeled Russia a state sponsor of terrorism, it would constitute a “point of no return” for the two nations. Calls to do so are a sign of American weakness, he said, since Washington is no longer in a position to bend to its will any nation whose politics it does not like for whatever reason.