“The United States will maintain its Crimea-related sanctions against Russia. Indeed, further Russian escalation of this kind will only make matters worse.”
The Trump Administration was quick to condemn what Ukraine claims is Russia’s most recent act of war.
Over the weekend, Ukraine claimed Russia opened fire on several of their ships in the Kerch Strait. Mary covered the incident in detail here:
The undeclared war between Ukraine and Russia took a horrific turn on Sunday after Ukraine claimed that Russia opened fire on its navy in the Kerch Strait, which separates the Black and Azoz Seas.
The attack wounded six sailors and Russia seized at least three Ukrainian vessels.
Ukraine‘s “Military Cabinet passed a resolution to impose a martial law.” President Petro Poroshenko plans to “appeal to the Ukrainian parliament to approve his declaration of martial law.”
At an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council Monday, US ambassador Nikki Haley, accused Russia of taking “outlaw actions.” From the WaPo:
Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, accused Russia on Monday of taking “outlaw actions” against Ukrainian ships in an incident at sea this weekend and vowed that sanctions punishing Russia’s annexation of Crimea would continue.
Speaking at an emergency meeting of the Security Council called by both Russia and Ukraine, Haley said the United States would welcome a normal relationship with Russia.
“But outlaw actions like this one continue to make that impossible,” she said. “The United States will maintain its Crimea-related sanctions against Russia. Indeed, further Russian escalation of this kind will only make matters worse.”
Haley pointedly noted she had spoken with President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo before coming to the Security Council. So far, she is the most senior U.S. official to speak publicly on Sunday’s incident.
She said Russia had acted illegally, and arrogantly, when it blocked three Ukrainian ships traversing the Kerch Strait as they sailed from Odessa on the Black Sea to Mariupol on the Azov Sea. They opened fire on the fleet, injuring six sailors. The ships, and at least 23 sailors, are now in Russian custody.
Watch Haley here:
WATCH: In first response from US gov't leadership, Amb. Haley says in Security Council mtg. that Russia’s shooting and seizing Ukrainian vessels is "outrageous violation of sovereign Ukrainian territory" and marks “yet another reckless Russian escalation." pic.twitter.com/hczWuTI5wu
— NBC News (@NBCNews) November 26, 2018
Monday afternoon, Trump said he didn’t like what was happening. From ABC:
“Either way, we don’t like what’s happening, and hopefully, it will get straightened out,” he told reporters Monday as he left the White House for a campaign rally. “I know Europe is not — they are not thrilled. They’re working on it too. We’re all working on it together.”
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