US Arms Sales to Kiev Would Only Fuel Tensions: Russian Official
17:44 20.11.2014(updated 19:09 20.11.2014)
United States selling weapons to Ukraine would intensify the conflict in Donbas, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev told RIA Novosti.
MOSCOW, November 20 (Sputinik) – Possible US arms sales to Ukraine will only fuel tensions in the country hit by a massive civil conflict, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said Thursday.
"I think that the US was among those who initiated the current conflict in Ukraine. If they sell weapons there, the conflict will only intensify," Patrushev told RIA Novosti, commenting on the US Administration's plans to sell weapons to the Kiev government.
Earlier in the day, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said that if the United States decides to supply lethal weapons to Ukraine, it would be a direct violation of the Geneva Agreements.
The comments by the Russian officials come after US Deputy Secretary of State Adviser Anthony Blinken announced on Wednesday that the United States has to consider providing arms to Ukraine.
During his September visit to the United States, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko requested lethal military assistance from the Obama administration. Within the US Senate there is bipartisan support for supplying Ukraine with military equipment, but the White House has so far refused any overt programs to arm the government in Kiev.
The Ukrainian conflict escalated in mid-April, when Kiev launched a military operation in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, where people refused to recognize the new government that came to power after the February coup.
The warring sides reached a ceasefire agreement in September, but have since accused each other of violating the truce. An average of 13 people have been killed every day in eastern Ukraine since the ceasefire came into place, according to the UN.
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