Senator Bob Corker, ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement regarding reports of a Russian convoy entering Ukraine with military artillery and personnel:
“Reports of further Russian movement into Ukraine bear all the hallmarks of Crimea and must be met with strength, including broader, more crippling sanctions, appropriate lethal assistance and long-requested intelligence support for Ukraine. Our constant dithering on a response to Russian aggression over the last several months has empowered Putin to press forward instead of demonstrating that we are strongly committed to Ukrainian independence. Permitting Putin to continue these provocative acts could result in devastating and perhaps irreversible consequences.”
In April, Senator Corker introduced legislation as a strategic response to Russian aggression in Europe. The bill would strengthen the NATO alliance, impose a series of tough sanctions for specific Russian actions, including against Rosneft, Novatek, Gazprombank and VEB, and authorize defensive military assistance and support for non-NATO allies of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia.