Obama considers annexation of Crimea as ‘improvisation’ by Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin had no strategy prepared concerning Ukraine and the annexation of the Crimea was “an improvisation” by the Kremlin in response to the unexpected ouster of Ukraine’s president, U.S. President Barack Obama said in an interview with the U.S. television’s CNN channel on Sunday, according to Ukrainian news service Podrobnosti.
“Mr. Putin made this decision around Crimea and Ukraine - not because of some grand strategy, but essentially because he was caught off-balance by the protests in the Maidan and [former Ukrainian President Viktor] Yanukovych then fleeing after we had brokered a deal to transition power in Ukraine,” Obama said.
“This improvisation that he's been doing has … gotten him deeper and deeper into a situation that is a violation of international law, that violates the integrity, territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, has isolated Russia diplomatically, has made Europe wary of doing business with Russia, [and that] has allowed the imposition of sanctions that are crippling Russia's economy at a time when their oil revenues are dropping.
“The annexation of Crimea is a cost, not a benefit, to Russia. The days in which the conquest of land somehow was a formula for great nation status [are] over.”
As reported earlier, the U.S. president promised to step up pressure on Russia due to the Ukrainian crisis, and at the same time bolster support for Kyiv.