Washington, DC: Following reports that President Obama is taking a ‘fresh look’ at considering sending defensive weapons and other lethal aide to Ukraine, Congressman Mike Turner, President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, released the following statement:
“As Putin continues to send troops, tanks and weapons across the Ukrainian border, I am pleased to hear the Administration is taking a fresh look at providing the Ukrainian military with the weapons systems they so desperately need. Vladimir Putin has no intention of deescalating the burgeoning crisis he has created. The Administration needs to act now and stop the handwringing that has characterized the President’s foreign policy.” said Turner.
On April 30 2014, Congressman Mike Turner called on President Obama to heed Ukraine’s urgent needs list for both lethal and non-lethal equipment and 'provide further military assistance to Ukraine in order to contain Russian orchestrated unrest.'
On September 18, 2014, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko addressed a joint session of Congress. Before Congress, President Poroshenko stated that 'Ukraine’s fighters need more military equipment, both lethal and non-lethal, urgently.'
Notably, he said “blankets, night-vision goggles are also important…But one cannot win the war with blankets. Even more, we cannot keep the peace with a blanket…In Ukraine, you don’t build a democracy. It already exists. You just defend it.”
“I am hopeful that the President will heed President Poroshenko’s request and take action to empower the Ukrainian army and to deter future Russian military aggression. Currently, the Russian military holds a significant advantage and the provision of U.S. weapons to Ukraine is necessary to change Putin’s calculus,” said Turner.
Yesterday, The Brookings Institution, The Atlantic Council, and the Chicago Council on Global jointly released a project titled, “Preserving Ukraine’s Independence, Resisting Russian Aggression: What the United States and NATO must do."
This report was authored by eight former senior U.S. diplomatic and military officials and urges the United States and NATO to increase lethal defensive assistance to the Ukrainian military.