In retaliation against Congress’s tough sanctions bill, Russia has seized two U.S. properties and ordering a reduction in American embassy staff in Moscow.

President Trump intends to sign a new package of sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea that the Senate approved this week, the White House said Friday in a statement.

The legislation bars Trump from easing or waiving the penalties on Russia unless Congress agrees. In its statement, the White House said Trump “negotiated regarding critical elements” of early drafts of the bill and approved of the final draft “based on its responsiveness to his negotiations.”

Trump, who is ensnared by allegations of Russian hacking and possible collusion by his campaign to help him win the presidential election last year, had previously objected to the curbs on his ability to ease sanctions on Russia, a possibility he has raised in the past.

Before the White House statement, Moscow retaliated Friday by ordering the expulsion of American diplomats and seized recreational property used by embassy staff.

The Russian foreign ministry told Washington to cut its diplomatic staff to 455 by Sept. 1 and said it would shutter a dacha, or country retreat, used by U.S. diplomatic staff on the outskirts of Moscow, as well as some warehouse facilities.

The State Department did not immediately respond to the move.


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Russian President Vladimir Putin previously signaled that his country was prepared to hit back against Washington for what he called “anti-Russian hysteria.”

The sanctions from Washington relate to Russia’s 2014 annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea territory and support for a rebellion by separatists in east Ukraine, as well as alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

They target…