US lifts Russia sanctions for some electronics exports
WASHINGTON - The Trump administration is revising some recent U.S. sanctions that prevented American companies from exporting some electronic equipment to Russia.
The Treasury Department says U.S. companies can apply to Russia's Federal Security Service to sell encrypted electronic devices.
That contact was barred under penalties the Obama administration imposed after U.S. intelligence agencies concluded that Russia meddled in the U.S. presidential election.
Officials say several U.S. businesses and consulting companies sought the change, which doesn't affect other sanctions imposed by the Obama administration.
Democrats and even some Republicans have been concerned about President Donald Trump's commitment to U.S. sanctions after his pledges to improve relations with Russia. But the White House denied it was easing sanctions. Trump told reporters today, "I haven't eased anything." And spokesman Sean Spicer said the move was part of a "regular course of action."
The administration today also toughened penalties on Iran, expanding a list of medical equipment that needs federal authorization in order to be sold to Iranian customers.