White House: will remain tough on Russia until its behavior changes

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders takes questions during a daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. March 12, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration will maintain tough policies against Russia until Moscow changes its behavior, the White House said on Thursday.

“I think you can see from the actions we’ve taken up until this point we’re going to be tough on Russia until they decide to change their behavior,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told a regular briefing after being asked if Russian President Vladimir Putin was “playing” Trump.

Earlier in the day, Washington slapped sanctions on Russian individuals and entities for alleged U.S. election meddling and cyber attacks but put off targeting oligarchs and government officials close to Putin, prompting U.S. lawmakers in both parties to say Trump needs to do much more.

Reporting by Jim Oliphant; Writing by Eric Walsh; Editing by Eric Beech