Trump says United States will 'counteract' any Russian meddling in 2018 elections

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New sanctions against Russia is likely to be unveiled "within a week", and will include measures against the 13 Russians indicted last month in the special counsel's probe of election meddling, the nation's top intelligence official told U.S. senators on Tuesday.

US President Donald Trump insists he's not anxious about Russian Federation meddling in the 2018 midterm elections.

National Intelligence Director Dan Coats said on March 6 that new sanctions will be announced shortly after members of the Senate Armed Services Committee criticized the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump for not imposing sanctions when it released a list of 210 wealthy and powerful Russians connected to the Kremlin in January. "We just don't know how much and when and where", Coats said.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also expressed confidence that the government may proceed on the issue "within the next few weeks".

Moscow denies seeking to meddle in the US vote. "It's a dicey issue", Coats said. Senator Mazie Hirono, a Democrat from Hawaii, asked who should lead efforts to counter Russian Federation with this year's elections "right around the corner". Admiral Mike Rogers, the current NSA director, told the panel Trump had not granted him authority to disrupt Russian hacking. "We're working with states and local election officials", he said.

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The indictment issued by the U.S. special counsel charged them with running a huge but hidden social media trolling campaign aimed in part at helping Mr Trump defeat Democrat Hillary Clinton. It's a "high priority" led by the offices of Thomas Bossert, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, and Rob Joyce, cybersecurity coordinator for the National Security Council.

Coats agreed that the US must do more to deter attacks. Trump has denied collusion between his associates and Russian Federation.

Coats said you can expect to hear about continued cyber threats from North Korea, China and enemies in the Middle East. Last year, Congress near-unanimously passed a law stepping up mandatory sanctions against Russia's defence, energy, and banking sectors, as well as intelligence, railways, and metals and mining industries.

Democratic Senator Martin Heinrich said, "I fear a "whole of government approach" has been a catch-all for 'It's someone else's job'".

"We are deeply concerned that such reviews may have presented an opportunity for Russian intelligence agents looking to attack or hack the United States' elections infrastructure".

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