WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on Russia’s incursion into Ukraine.
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine appears to have begun — in a flurry of lies and bluster, whining and belligerence from the Kremlin.
“Monday’s dark and threatening hour-long speech by Vladimir Putin asserting that Ukraine is not a sovereign nation, combined with news that Moscow is going to recognize two small pockets of Russian-backed separatists in Ukraine as independent states and send the Russian military to ’defend’ them, put words to the actions that Russia has been taking over several months. The massing of Russian military forces encircling Ukraine has made clear the violent and appalling plan that Putin has prepared to smother the 41 million people of Ukraine.
“The United States government is poised to impose economic sanctions for this aggression and I expect a bipartisan consensus will support activation of these plans. If these sanctions are imposed swiftly, they may deter further Russian aggression.
“The 30 nations of NATO have seen enhanced American support for their defense against potential Russian aggression and we have supplied considerable military equipment and training to the Ukrainians. There are no plans for American troops to directly engage militarily with the Russians.
“The economic penalties that will be imposed on Russia will have inevitable repercussions in other countries, including the United States. The Biden administration has made plans to mitigate these effects on Americans, but this aggression by Russia will have implications for many nations beyond Ukraine.”
“I look forward to continuing close consultation with the Biden administration.”