A spat between U.S. and Russian officials over escalating and reciprocal sanctions showed no sign of letting up on Friday, with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin goading Senator John McCain over an earlier comment he made about Siberia.
On Thursday, Washington levied a second round of sanctions against Russian officials and businessmen over the annexation of Crimea, prompting Russia to respond almost immediately with travel bans and assets freezes for several U.S. officials.
House Speaker John Boehner's spokesman said that his boss considered his inclusion on the list to be a great source of pride, while McCain opted to mock Siberia as a possible destination for vacationing.
"I guess this means my spring break in Siberia is off, my Gazprom stock is lost, and my secret bank account in Moscow is frozen," McCain quipped in a statement. "Nonetheless, I will never cease my efforts on behalf of the freedom, independence, and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including Crimea."
"Well, Jonnie, never say never!," Rogozin wrote on his Twitter account in response to McCain's comments about Siberia.
Well, Jonnie, never say never! http://t.co/nGapdcev9G— Dmitry Rogozin (@DRogozin) 21 Март 2014
A Twitter message written by Rogozin in response to McCain's Siberia remarks.
It was Rogozin who kicked off the sparring on Monday, when he taunted U.S. President Barack Obama on Twitter for including him on the first U.S. sanctions list.
"Comrade Obama, what should do those who have neither accounts nor property abroad? Or U didn't think about it?)"