US senators: Merkel, Hollande, Obama ‘legitimize division of Ukraine’
U.S. Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham have accused Western leaders of “conniving with Russian President Vladimir Putin and his puppets in the Donbas to dismember Ukraine,” in a joint statement issued in response to the events in Debaltseve, the Voice of America has reported.
"The chancellor of Germany and the president of France, with the support of the president of the United States, are legitimizing the dismemberment of a sovereign nation in Europe for the first time in seven decades," the senators said.
"Western leaders say there is no military solution to the conflict in Ukraine. [Russian President] Vladimir Putin clearly does not think so," McCain and Graham said.
"[Putin] continues his aggression, and in the absence of greater Western support for Ukrainian forces, a Russian-imposed military solution is exactly what will continue to unfold in Ukraine, just as it has in parts of Georgia and Moldova."
McCain and Graham called for the immediate provision of weapons to Ukraine and introduction of tougher sanctions against Russia.
"It is long past time to provide defensive weapons to Ukraine and to impose additional sanctions and costs that can change Putin's behavior, including the removal of Russia from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication system".
The senators urged the president Obama to act immediately, and not to hide behind a failed attempt to negotiate with an aggressor when conditions on the ground render diplomacy ineffective.