Corker Urges President Obama to Impose New Sanctions on Russia to Deter Further Intervention in Ukraine


WASHINGTON – With European Union ministers to discuss new sanctions against Russia on Monday, U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, sent a letter to President Barack Obama today calling on the U.S. to show leadership and impose additional sanctions on Russian-owned companies as a deterrent to further Russian military intervention in Ukraine.

“Rather than wait for a Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine to implement additional sanctions, which seems to be U.S. policy at the moment, we must take action now that will help prevent this worst-case scenario before it becomes a reality,” said Corker in the letter to the president. “Unless Russia ends its destabilization of eastern Ukraine and drastically reduces troop levels on the Ukrainian border immediately, further sanctions against strategic sectors of the Russian economy, particularly targeting Gazprom and additional important financial institutions, should be imposed within days...Our European allies need to see action, leadership, and resolve from the United States.”
 
Full text of the letter is included below.
 
Dear President Obama,
 
Russia’s decision to invade and annex Crimea has undermined the fundamental principles that help preserve peace and stability in Europe. To sustain these principles, the U.S. and our European allies must impose significant costs on Russia’s leadership for its actions in Ukraine.
 
Rather than wait for a Russian invasion of eastern Ukraine to implement additional sanctions, which seems to be U.S. policy at the moment, we must take action now that will help prevent this worst-case scenario before it becomes a reality. Unfortunately, the Kremlin’s growing efforts to destabilize eastern Ukraine do not acknowledge our determination to punish Russia for its invasion and division of a second neighboring country in less than six years. As a result, Moscow has felt free to amass at least 40,000 troops on its border with Ukraine, and according to NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander, General Philip Breedlove, Russia could carry out an “incursion” into Ukraine and achieve its objectives in just three to five days.
 
Unless Russia ends its destabilization of eastern Ukraine and drastically reduces troop levels on the Ukrainian border immediately, further sanctions against strategic sectors of the Russian economy, particularly targeting Gazprom and additional important financial institutions, should be imposed within days. Our‎ European allies need to see action, leadership, and resolve from the U.S.  A failure to respond to Russia’s recent actions will give the Kremlin a license to continue to threaten and undermine Ukraine, Moldova, and other countries in Europe and Eurasia.
 

Sincerely,
 

Bob Corker
U.S. Senator 

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