President Donald Trump's senior adviser, Kellyanne Conway, said Friday that removing US sanctions on Russia "is under consideration" by the administration.
When asked whether lifting the Obama administration's sanctions on Russia would be "on the table" during Trump's planned phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday, Conway replied that "all of that is under consideration."
"If another nation with considerable resources wishes to join together with the United States of America to try to defeat and eradicate radical Islamic terrorism, then we're listening," Conway said on "Fox and Friends." "It's very important to at least have these conversations."
President Barack Obama sanctioned Russia in 2014 over its annexation of Crimea and incursion into eastern Ukraine. He issued new sanctions against Russia late last month over its US election-related hacking, calling Moscow's "malicious cyber-enabled activities" a "national emergency" aimed at undermining democratic processes.
Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin through the years
Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin through the years
U.S. President Barack Obama extends his hand to Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting at the United Nations General Assembly in New York September 28, 2015. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Russian President Vladimir Putin (C) looks back at U.S. President Barack Obama (L) as they arrive with Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) at an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit plenary session at the International Convention Center at Yanqi Lake, in Beijing, November 11, 2014. REUTERS/Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Pool (CHINA - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
U.S. President Barack Obama (L) meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the G8 Summit at Lough Erne in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland June 17, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (NORTHERN IRELAND - Tags: POLITICS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd R) chats with Russia's President Vladimir Putin prior to a working session at the Group of 20 (G20) leaders summit in the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya, Turkey, November 16, 2015. REUTERS/Kayhan Ozer/Pool TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Barack Obama (L) talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and U.S. security advisor Susan Rice (2nd L) prior to the opening session of the Group of 20 (G20) Leaders summit summit in the Mediterranean resort city of Antalya, Turkey November 15, 2015. Man at 2nd R is unidentified. REUTERS/Cem Oksuz/Pool TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Barack Obama (L) talks with Russia's President Vladimir Putin as they gather for a family photo with fellow world leaders at the start of the G20 summit at the Regnum Carya Resort in Antalya, Turkey, November 15, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
U.S. President Barack Obama talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the APEC Economic Leadersâ Meeting in Lima, Peru November 20, 2016. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
A huge video screen on Sword Beach shows U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin as they arrive for the International 70th D-Day Commemoration Ceremony in Ouistreham June 6, 2014. World leaders and veterans gathered by the beaches of Normandy on Friday to mark the 70th anniversary of the Allied D-Day landings that helped turn the tables in World War Two. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (FRANCE - Tags: POLITICS ANNIVERSARY CONFLICT TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
Russian President Vladimir Putin holds out his arms as he walks past U.S. President Barack Obama (centre L) during a group photo at the G20 Summit in St. Petersburg September 6, 2013. Above Obama is British Prime Minister David Cameron, above Putin is German Chancellor Angela Merkel. At right is Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (RUSSIA - Tags: TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY BUSINESS POLITICS)
Russia's President Vladimir Putin (L) welcomes U.S. President Barack Obama before the first working session of the G20 Summit in Constantine Palace in Strelna near St. Petersburg, September 5, 2013. REUTERS/Grigory Dukor (RUSSIA - Tags: POLITICS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)
Russian President Vladimir Putin (L), British Prime Minister David Cameron (C) and U.S. President Barack Obama take part in a group photo for the G8 Summit in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland June 18, 2013.
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (NORTHERN IRELAND - Tags: POLITICS)
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) meets with Russia's President Vladimir Putin in Los Cabos, Mexico, June 18, 2012. The leaders are in Los Cabos to attend the G20 summit. REUTERS/Jason Reed (MEXICO - Tags: POLITICS)
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Trump suggested in a recent interview with The Wall Street Journal that sanctions could be lifted if Moscow proved a useful ally in fighting terrorism.
"If you get along and if Russia is really helping us," Trump asked, "why would anybody have sanctions if somebody's doing some really great things?"
Trump previously indicated that he was trying to forge a deal with Moscow to ease or remove sanctions in return for Russia reducing its nuclear arsenal. But Russia quickly denied that the size of its nuclear arsenal was ever up for negotiation.
Politico's Susan Glasser reported on Thursday that an executive order to unilaterally lift sanctions on Russia had already been drafted.
"Don't they have to change their behavior in order to get those sanctions lifted?" Fox hosts asked Conway, "by not carving up other countries, by not destroying families and towns indiscriminately, like they're doing in Syria?"
Conway replied that Trump's policy was "America First," including in his foreign policy and national-security moves.
"Yes, he will call out other nations when he believes [that what they're doing] is not in the American interest ... or in the interest of humanity," Conway said. "But that's what these private conversations with world leaders are for."