The Kremlin on Thursday vowed to retaliate against "unacceptable" new United States sanctions against Russia over its alleged role in a nerve agent attack on a former spy in Britain, which prompted the ruble and Russian stocks to tumble.
Separate legislation introduced last week in draft form by Republican and Democratic senators, dubbed "the sanctions bill from hell" by one of its backers, proposes curbs on the operations of several state-owned Russian banks in the United States and restrictions on their use of the dollar.
The euro also gained against the rouble, which slumped to a rate of 76.8.
The Government has been consistent in pointing the finger of blame at Moscow for the poisoning using novichok - a military-grade nerve agent developed by the former Soviet Union.
UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt thanked the USA on Thursday in a tweet.
While Russia returned to growth in 2017 after two years of recession, it pales in comparison with growth figures seen during Putin's first two terms in office from 2000 to 2008 thanks to soaring oil prices.
Unless Russia agrees within 90 days to stop all use of chemical weapons and permit inspections to confirm their elimination, the law requires the United States to choose from a range of additional measures, including withdrawal of USA support for global loans and US bank loans, prohibition of landing rights for Russian airlines, and suspension of diplomatic relations.
The Russian embassy in the United States hit back on Thursday morning.
The embassy said it continued to call for an open and transparent investigation into the incident.
The first set of sanctions covered by that announcement, which USA officials said target export licenses of sensitive US technologies and industrial equipment, such as electronics, calibration equipment, and gas turbine engines, are expected to enter into force around August 22. These could go as far as a ban on Russian airlines using U.S. airports.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova leading a briefing
A State Department official said the sanctions could have a significant impact on trade with Russian Federation.
In a statement issued by its embassy in Washington, Russia called charges that Moscow employed chemical weapons "far fetched" - arguing the US lacked evidence, and repeating demands for a new investigation into the poisoning. He said the new sanctions amount to "inflicting a punishment in the absence of a crime, in the tradition of lynch law".
All are prohibited from any transactions involving the USA financial system.
"We once again flatly reject any accusations regarding the possible involvement of the Russian state in what happened in Salisbury". Those sanctions restrict travel and financial transactions. The Trump administration had 60 days, under law, to report their findings back to the committee, but by the June letter Congress had heard nothing.
Russian Federation has warned the U.S. that any sanctions against its banking system or their foreign currency dealings would be considered "an act of economic war".
She said sanctions would take effect on or around August 22.
What was the nerve agent?
In March, two weeks after the attack, Trump signed a statement, along with British, French and German leaders, blaming Russian Federation.
They were critically ill, but survived after spending weeks in the hospital.
Three months later, Charlie Rowley of Amesbury, England, found a sealed, boxed bottle of perfume and gave it to his girlfriend Dawn Sturgess, who died after spraying the Novichok within on her wrists.