Trump to order sanctions against countries that interfere in US elections
Washington: US President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order on Wednesday that would authorise sanctions against countries or foreigners who try to interfere in American elections, according to a media report.
The move comes amidst increasing realisation in the US that the Russians interfered in the 2016 presidential elections. US intelligence agencies now believe that Russia would again try to interfere the mid-term polls this year and also the 2020 presidential elections.
The executive order in this regard is likely to be signed by Trump as early as Wednesday. The order described by a US official familiar with its drafting as "another tool in the tool kit" to deter election interference by foreign adversaries, according to The Wall Street Journal.
"This is not a single solution, but it makes a clear statement by the president that this sort of activity will not be tolerated and will be punished, the official was quoted as saying.
"President Trump is committed to protecting our nation's elections from foreign interference and has made it clear that his administration will not tolerate foreign interference in our elections from any nation state or other malicious actor, the White House National Security Council Spokesman Garrett Marquis said.
As per news reports, the order would put the CIA, the National Security Agency, the Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in charge of determining whether meddling has taken place.
Among other things, it would require federal agencies aware of foreign election meddling to relay the information to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.