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Biden: US shoulder to shoulder with Europe on Ukraine crisis

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 18.03.2014 14:50
US vice-president Joe Biden has said that further sanctions will be imposed by the US and EU after President Putin signs a treaty to bring Crimea into the Russian Federation.

Joe Biden (left) with PM Tusk in Warsaw: photo - PAP/Radek Pietruszka

"We stand shoulder to shoulder with Poland and the international community in condemning the assault on the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine," Joe Biden said after talks with Prime minister Donald Tusk in Warsaw and promised further action against Russia following asset freezes and travel bans imposed by the US and EU on Monday.

Biden is having talks with the Polish government and the Estonian president in the Polish capital following a referendum in Crimea which voted 97 percent for leaving Ukraine and joining Russia.

The US, EU and interim Ukrainian government have declared the vote illegal.

"The annexation of Crimea is unacceptable to Poland and the international community," PM Tusk said, adding that the change in geo-political borders "increases risks to central and eastern Europe".

The "unprecedented annexation and Russia's campaign in Ukraine is not just a problem for Ukraine but for the whole world," Tusk said.

Meanwhile, President Vladimir Putin signed a treaty making Crimea part of Russia on Tuesday but said he did not plan to seize any other regions of Ukraine.

Putin told the Russian parliament that the ousting of pro-Moscow president Viktor Yanukovich last month was by people that included "neo-Nazis, Russophobes and anti-Semites".

"Western partners, led by the United States, prefer not to be guided by international law in their practical policies, but by the rule of the gun," Putin told MPs. "They have come to believe in their exceptionalism and their sense of being the chosen ones. That they can decide the destiny of the world, that it is only them who can be right."

The Russian foreign ministry has said that the US and EU sanctions imposed on Russia yesterday were counterproductive.

"Attempts to speak to Russia in the language of force and threaten Russian citizens with sanctions will lead nowhere," a foreign ministry statement said. (pg)

source: PAP/Reuters

tags: Ukraine
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