Secretary of State Rex Tillerson looks on as U.S. President Donald Trump holds a joint news conference with Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni at the White House in Washington, U.S., April 20, 2017. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein - RTS137Y6

The United States will not lift sanctions on Russia until President Vladimir Putin hands Crimea back to Ukraine, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said late Sunday.
During a phone call with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Tillerson said the sanctions—which have crippled Russia’s economy and pushed down the value of the ruble—will “ remain in place until Russia returns control of the Crimean peninsula to Ukraine.”
He also said that Moscow must honor the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine that was outlined in the Minsk agreements, according to a State Department official.
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U.S. President Donald Trump’s position on whether he will lift the sanctions on Russia has been unclear since his election last year. The U.S. imposed sanctions on a wide swath of Russian businesses and wealthy individuals following Russia’s annexation of the Crimean region by force in 2014.
During the 2016 election campaign Trump …
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