April 28, 2014

Corker and Ayotte: Latest U.S. Sanctions on Russia Just a Slap on the Wrist

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Readiness Subcommittee, issued the following statement today regarding the additional sanctions imposed by the Obama administration on Russian officials and entities:

“After a week of rhetoric from the administration, I had hoped we would have responded to Russia’s blatant violations of its commitments to cease efforts to destabilize Ukraine with more than just a slap on the wrist,” said Corker. “Until Putin feels the real pain of sanctions targeting entities like Gazprom, which the Kremlin uses to coerce Ukraine and other neighbors, as well as some significant financial institutions, I don’t think diplomacy will change Russian behavior and de-escalate this crisis.”

“The administration’s tepid, incremental sanctions are insufficient given Russia’s continued occupation of Crimea and ongoing actions to fuel unrest in eastern Ukraine,” said Ayotte. “Putin will not be deterred until the U.S. takes swift action to impose sanctions now on Russia’s financial sector – and authorizes more severe sanctions, such as on Russia’s energy sector, that would go into effect should Putin take additional aggressive actions against Ukraine. The U.S. should also provide additional support to the Ukrainian military.”