Russia says it will retaliate against any possible sanctions that the United States may impose on Moscow over its involvement in Ukraine.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that Moscow would have to respond in such situations that are provoked by “Washington’s rash and irresponsible actions.”
"We have frequently explained to the Americans... why unilateral sanctions do not fit the standards of civilized relations between states," Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said.
Lukashevich also added that such response would not be necessarily symmetrical.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday criticized the West’s threats of “sanctions and boycotts” against the country.
At the opening session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Lavrov said those who speak of sanctions are the ones that “ultimately polarized Ukrainian society.”
Earlier, the US and the European Union had warned Moscow of the consequences of its military action in Ukraine.
Lavrov also said that the presence of Russian troops in Ukraine's Crimean peninsula is necessary to protect the country’s citizens.
"We are talking here about protection of our citizens and compatriots, about protection of the most fundamental of the human rights—the right to live and nothing more," he noted.
The US Senate and the Obama administration are discussing possible measures against the Russian government such as a halt to military cooperation, and economic sanctions in addition to moves against individual Russians, including visa bans and asset freezes.