Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov said that the U.S. sanctions bill against Russia is intended to intimidate business circles in other countries in order to coerce them into making a choice. He further said that Russia needs to diminish its dependence upon the dollar and the U.S. financial system because otherwise, "we will be constantly on the [American] hook, and that's exactly what they want." He made the statements during a televised interview with the "International Life" Internet magazine on August 7.
Sergey Ryabkov: "To my understanding, the political essence of the sanctions bill [against Russia] is, in general, to scare the world, if not to take it hostage. The bill has flexible, elastic definitions. In addition to direct actions already decided upon, many measures are to be determined by the U.S. Treasury. If they feel like it, they will impose sanctions against anyone who cooperates with the Russians, and if they don't feel like it, they won't. They count on the fear of other countries' business [circles], which will have to make a choice.
"So in general, the policy of Russia's opponents on Capitol Hill is aimed at drawing new dividing lines. They believe that they can isolate Russia, either directly or indirectly. We understand this game full well. For us it is important to establish working economic models, in which dependence upon the dollar, upon the U.S. financial systems, will be diminished. I am not an economist, I do not represent any financial players, and I don't know how much money our banks possess, but as someone who works for the MFA, I feel that this [must be done]. Otherwise, we will be constantly on the [American] hook, and that's exactly what they want."