23 October 2016

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U.S. Senator Coons: No consensus in Senate on lethal aid to Ukraine

U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), who was visiting Kyiv, Ukraine, on Tuesday, as the head of a U.S. Congress delegation, says that he does not think that there is consensus in the U.S. Senate at the moment on providing lethal weapons to Ukraine, according to an UNIAN correspondent.


The Obama Administration was against supplying lethal aid to Ukraine due to concerns about the weakening of joint commitments with the European allies in the issue of tough sanctions against Russia, he said.

In this connection, the senator said, that it is important for the United States to hold the strong and united front with the European allies, but it is equally, if not more, important to maintain Ukraine's independence amid Russian aggression, he said.

Ukraine seeks to set up joint production of lethal weapons with U.S. – AmbassadorCoons said that during his recent visit to Ukraine he had heard several sincere and serious requests about strengthening U.S. support for Ukraine in defense, materiel, but also weapons. "And I'm going to address it seriously," he said.

U.S. Representative Charlie Dent (R-PA) in turn recalled that U.S. Congress had earlier allowed U.S. President Barack Obama to arm Ukraine.

"I supported that position. I know that many U.S. Representatives supported that stand, but evidently others, in Europe, and in the [U.S. President's] incumbent Administration took a different stand on that issue," he said.

Now, he said, many Congressmen would support a decision on lethal aid for Ukraine to protect itself.

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