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FILE PHOTO: Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov looks on at the start of two days of closed-door nuclear talks at the United Nations offices in Geneva October 15, 2013. REUTERS/Fabrice Coffrini/Poo

(reuters_tickers)

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia is preparing retaliatory measures in response to U.S. sanctions on some Russian companies and citizens over alleged connections to North Korea, RIA news agency cited Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov as saying on Thursday.

The U.S. Treasury earlier on Thursday blacklisted nine companies and government institutions, including two Russian firms, and three people for their support of North Korea's weapons program.

Ryabkov said the move would not help efforts to restore relations between Moscow and Washington, RIA reported.

(Reporting by Jack Stubbs; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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