WASHINGTON, D.C.–Russia’s invasion of the Crimean area of the Ukraine is wrong and the U.S. should take steps to make that definitive statement, says Sen. Roger Wicker. His camp says Wicker has drafted a resolution that would condemn Russia’s actions.
Asst. Majority Leader for the U.S. Senate Dick Durbin (D-Ill) is working with Wicker on that bi-partisan resolution that calls for the withdrawal of Russian troops, and a negotiated settlement to any concerns regarding the Crimea. It also urges the administration and European Union to use a range of economic and diplomatic leverage against Russia should it fail to abide by these basic economic norms.
“Russia has a clear track record of reckless disregard for its international obligations,” said Wicker. “President Putin’s armed aggression against Ukraine just days after the Sochi Olympics, and its invasion of Georgia in 2008, demonstrate a blatant defiance and disdain for the international community. Failure on the part of the United States and our allies to act quickly and decisively will only embolden Putin’s aggression and put Ukraine’s sovereignty at further risk.”
A news release from Wicker’s camp outlined what other senators were saying:
“Russia must immediately pull back its military and allow a diplomatic solution to advance in Crimea – one that respects Ukrainian sovereignty but also the unique history and makeup of the region,” said Durbin. “There is no reason that the situation in Ukraine needs to be manipulated into a new battle between the East and West. Ukraine can have stronger economic and political ties with the West while also maintaining strong economic and cultural ties with Russia. These decisions are up to the Ukrainian people, but none of this should be decided by the barrel of a Russian gun.”
“Russia must immediately withdraw its military from Ukraine and adhere to the core principles of international law,” said Senator Shaheen, D-N.H. “I am committed to supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and to a peaceful political transition that ultimately serves the best interests of the Ukrainian people.”
“As this resolution states very clearly, Russia should withdraw its soldiers and refrain from further violations of Ukraine’s sovereignty and international law. I remain steadfast in working with my colleagues in Congress and with the Administration to support Ukraine and to discourage Russia from further undermining Ukraine’s territorial integrity,” said Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine’s Crimea region is a blatant affront to international norms and agreements that, if not reversed, demands a forceful economic and diplomatic response,” said Senator Kaine, D-Va. “I’m pleased to join my Senate colleagues in condemning Russia’s actions and urge the administration to continue pursuing all available economic and political levers to punish this behavior. Ukraine deserves a future where its citizens are free to exercise their sovereign, democratic right to pursue domestic and foreign policies without outside interference.”
“As a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, I have been following this issue closely and am deeply concerned with Russia’s actions, which are in clear violation of existing treaties and agreements,” said Senator Warner, D-Va. “We need to work closely with our NATO allies to demonstrate that Russian military aggression will not be tolerated in Ukraine. All Americans and our allies need to stand together so that we can resolve this crisis.”
“Russia must respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and immediately withdraw its troops from Ukrainian soil. Ukraine’s people have a right to decide their own future without interference from Russia. The United States and international community should utilize all diplomatic and economic options to address this act of aggression and secure the rights and borders of Ukraine,” said Senator Brown, D-Ohio.
“The United States should, whenever possible, stand with those who peacefully pursue freedom and democracy,” said Senator Mark Kirk, R-Ill. “With more than 50,000 Ukrainian-American families in Chicago, this is an issue that is personal to Illinois. Congress should continue to follow this closely while working to ensure a peaceful resolution to this conflict.”
Senators Chris Murphy, D-Conn., John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Ben Cardin, D-Md., Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., and Chris Coons, D-Del., are also cosponsors of the resolution.