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Republican senators introduce bill containing harsher sanctions against Russia

Published time: April 30, 2014 19:09
Senator Bob Corker (Reuters / Gary Cameron)

Senator Bob Corker (Reuters / Gary Cameron)

Republican members of the United States Senate took further steps on Wednesday towards increasing sanctions against Russia amidst an escalating international crisis surrounding neighboring Ukraine.

Just two days after US President Barack Obama introduced the White House’s latest attempt to reprimand Moscow for its role in the Ukrainian ordeal, 19 senators introduced legislation on Wednesday described by Reuters as being broader and tougher than anything put in place yet by the administration.

According to Reuters, the sanctions would apply to major Russian banks and energy companies, and come with $100 in military aid for Kiev. Wall Street Journal reporter Kristine Peterson added Wednesday morning that the military aspect of the proposal, if approved, would require the White House to substantially increase US and NATO support for the armed forces of allied Poland, Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia, as well as accelerate implementation of missile defense in Europe.

On Monday this week, the White House imposed additional sanctions on Russia. Those sanctions targeted seven Russian government officials and 17 companies closely tied with Russia’s Pres. Vladimir Putin.

“Since April 17, Russia has done nothing to meet its Geneva commitments and in fact has further escalated the crisis,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Monday this week. “Russia’s involvement in the recent violence in eastern Ukraine is indisputable.”

“The goal is not to go after Mr. Putin personally; the goal is to change his calculus, to encourage him to walk the walk, not just talk the talk,” Obama said.

“I think what is happening now shows us who really was mastering the process from the beginning,” Pres. Putin said in response this week. “But in the beginning, the United States preferred to remain in the shadow.”

The Kremlin fired back at first, and said Russia would not be hurt by the sanctions. Now just days later, conservative members of Congress are saying it’s time for Uncle Sam to up the ante.

“What we’ve seen from the administration is a lot of rhetoric,” Sen.Bob Corker(R-Tennessee) said Wednesday morning, according to the Journal.

"Until Putin feels the real pain of sanctions targeting entities like Gazprom, which the Kremlin uses to coerce Ukraine and other neighbors, as well as some significant financial institutions, I don't think diplomacy will change Russian behavior and de-escalate this crisis," he said in a statement.

Sen. Dan Coats (R-Indiana) added in his own remarks that “The lack of a forceful, effective response by the administration and Western leaders has given Putin little reason to expect that further aggression will be punished."

“We are introducing tough diplomatic, economic and financial sanctions, and I am hopeful that President Obama will support our effort,” Coats said.

Washington has blamed Moscow for encouraging a recent uprising in eastern Ukraine and the nearby peninsula of Crimea that has displaced several local governments and imposed pro-Russian officials in their place. The recent Geneva treaty was signed with the goal of relaxing tensions in the region ahead of upcoming elections in Ukraine being held to replace the country’s recently ousted president Viktor Yanukovych, both leaders in both the US and Russia have accused one another of failing to abide by those terms.

Comments (104)


Ed McCray 02.05.2014 17:00

Russia's economy is already a wreck. More sanctions should be imposed. After reading some of these posts that whole country needs a wake up call. They need to understand that they are Russian now and not the Soviet Union. To tell the Ukrainian gov't that they need to pull there troops out of Eastern Ukraine is absurd. Russia needs to mind it's own business. I wish Putin would invade so we could show that 3rd world country where the real power lies. There is only 1 superpower and it's the US. Get over it Russia.


G Mitchell 02.05.2014 00:01

Hi "dianne blue" / "Basho" .... I mean you guys.


Felix B Glass 01.05.2014 19:59

you just wonder if any russians would commit suicide because the threat of being worth nothing and being treated like a rabid' dog by that rabid army,input, ldsteel boot usa and nato....? .just an afterthought..what makes someone want to be boss that bad to be as ugly as the "free world" as ugly as the united union jack style overthrow that is modern armies. its nice to see so many countries "face up" (not face down) to us and such

View all comments (104)
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