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'Seasonal madness provoked by coronavirus' – Kremlin on reports US may sanction Russia over oil prices

'Seasonal madness provoked by coronavirus' – Kremlin on reports US may sanction Russia over oil prices
A Wall Street Journal report stating that the US government is considering additional sanctions on Russia over its role in the collapse of oil prices has been ridiculed by Vladimir Putin's spokesman.

Dmitry Peskov joked on Friday that perhaps the powers that be in the White House had fallen ill with a case of Covid-19.

"This nonsense about possible sanctions belongs in the category of seasonal madness provoked by coronavirus [making people] suffer from Russophobia," he said.

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According to the newspaper, the US government believes that intervention in the Russian-Saudi oil price war would stabilize the market, and be beneficial for American petroleum. It noted how the US petroleum industry has been badly hit by a rapid fall in the cost of oil.

The US is also considering diplomatic options to encourage the Saudis to reduce their own production. Both news items were well received by the oil market, and prices saw a jump.

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Speaking to RT, political analyst Alexander Asafov said that "the imposition of sanctions is completely logical for the policy of the United States, aimed at intensifying the pressure on their main geopolitical competitors – Russia and China."

At the start of 2020, the price of a barrel of Brent Crude oil was above $62. On Wednesday, it fell to a 17-year low of $24.52. As of Friday afternoon, the cost of a barrel has risen to $28.47.

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