Russia says it opposes new United Nations sanctions sought by the U.S. against a South Sudan army chief and a former army general who is now a rebel commander for continuing to fuel conflict in the world's newest nation.

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said the foreign ministers of Sudan and South Sudan, who recently held talks in Moscow with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, signed a joint communique opposing sanctions in the conflict-torn south.

"We think we need to take that into account," Churkin told reporters Tuesday. "The United States, very often they just say 'sanctions, sanctions, sanctions' and in some cases it severely aggravates the situation."

Diplomats said the United States has proposed sanctions against Sudanese Gen. Paul Malong and ex-general Johnson Olony who has joined rebel leader Riek Machar.