United States to act firmly in response to Russia's actions that harm them or their allies, partners – diplomat
Russia started the conflict in the east of Ukraine, and it bears full responsibility for its end, and the United States has showed its determination to hold Russia accountable for its reckless actions, Acting Deputy Chief of the U.S. Mission to Ukraine Joseph Pennington said.
Pennington said in a video statement to participants in an online panel discussion hosted by the Yalta European Strategy on Wednesday, that the United States will act firmly in response to Russia's actions that harm them or their allies and partners. The United States continues to call on Russia to fully implement its Minsk commitments, withdraw its weapons and troops led by it from Ukraine and return Ukraine full control over its internationally recognized borders.
He said there has recently been the largest concentration of Russian troops on Ukraine's borders since 2014. According to him, these destabilizing actions by Russia undermine the intentions to de-escalate in eastern Ukraine, reached on July 27, 2020.
Pennington said the United States will continue to monitor the situation very closely.
He said the United States firmly supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.
The Deputy Chief of the U.S. Mission to Ukraine said President Joe Biden also emphasized this when he spoke with President Vladimir Putin on April 13, when he drew attention to our concern about the sudden buildup of troops by Russia in the occupied Crimea and on the borders of Ukraine, and called on Russia to reduce tensions.
He assured that the United States will remain committed to strengthening its strategic partnership with Ukraine.
The diplomat said the U.S. European Command will continue bilateral and multinational military exercises to demonstrate their common readiness and determination.
Pennington said that, in addition to security assistance, another critical component to ensuring Ukraine's security is building a strong, stable, sovereign state that is resolutely engaged in combating widespread corruption.
He also said the United States has invested significant resources and efforts to tackle corruption in partnership with Ukrainians and their government. President Volodymyr Zelensky and his team have taken some important steps recently, but much more needs to be done, including the necessary steps to return the IMF program for Ukraine to work.
The Yalta European Strategy (YES) is the leading forum for discussing Ukraine's European future in a global context.