WASHINGTON (AP) â€” Treasury Secretary Jack Lew says sanctions on Russia to deter its aggressive moves toward Ukraine are taking an economic toll.
Lew tells a House panel the United States and its allies remain unified in imposing costs on Russia, and says additional penalties announced Monday will have an impact.
He said the goal was clear â€” forcing Russia to pursue a diplomatic solution.
The West has pursued penalties since Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula, and in response to violence in Ukraine involving pro-Russian separatists.
Lew said the United States is prepared to take additional steps if Russia doesn’t change its ways. He defended the penalties against some Republican and Democratic critics in Congress and insisted there has been a substantial deterioration in the Russian economy.