Amid rising tensions with Russia, US media reported that Mr Biden was likely soon to announce further retaliation against Moscow, including the expulsion of diplomats.
Biden administration officials have completed an intelligence review of alleged Russian wrongdoing, including election meddling and the hacking of the company Solarwinds, according to three people familiar with the matter, setting the stage for the US to announce retaliation soon.
Possible moves could include sanctions and the expulsion of Russian intelligence officials working in the U.S. under diplomatic cover, people familiar with the matter said. Senior officials are expected to meet on Wednesday to discuss what steps to take.
A person familiar with the matter said the U.S. response could come in several directions. That would include sanctions targeting people close to Russian President Vladimir Putin and institutions linked to election meddling.
The actions will be the result of a review ordered by President Biden on his first day in office in four areas: interference in the American election, reports that Russia offered a reward for the assassination of American soldiers in Afghanistan, the Solarwind attack and the poisoning of the Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny.
The Biden administration last month announced sanctions against Russian officials over the Navalny incident, but has so far been slow to act in three other areas.
Deciding what to do may be the biggest foreign policy test of Mr. Biden’s early presidency. But when the president was asked in an interview with ABC News last month whether he thought Putin was a “killer,” the tone was set. Biden also warned that Putin would “pay a price” for his alleged election meddling.
Biden’s approach to Russia differs from that of his predecessor, Donald Trump. While the United States has increased sanctions on Russia and expelled diplomats during Mr. Trump’s tenure, the president has been reluctant to criticize Mr. Putin and has said more attention should be paid to China’s national security threat.
Mr. Biden and his top aides must now weigh how much to punish Russia while seeking its help on priorities such as rejoining the Iran nuclear deal, reviving arms control talks and combating climate change.
In addition to sanctioning specific individuals, the United States may expel diplomats and hold private talks with Russia to map out further actions the United States is prepared to take. The moves are aimed at creating an effective deterrent against future cyberattacks, such as the one that compromised popular software made by Texas-based SolarWinds Corp. and infiltrated government agencies and private companies.
Russia has repeatedly denied allegations that it interfered in the election, poisoned critics or offered to pay bounties for the killing of U.S. soldiers.
The White House and State Department declined to comment Wednesday. That means “holding Russia accountable for its reckless and hostile behavior,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said when she announced the review Jan. 21.
Despite rising tensions between the former Cold War rivals, Putin is due to attend Biden’s summit on climate change later this month.