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US to Work with Allies to Impose Additional Costs on Russia Over Ukraine:

Sputnik News

21:19 21.11.2014(updated 22:07 21.11.2014)

The United States would work with its European and G-7 partners to increase the costs to Russia if it continues to violate Ukraine's sovereignty, the White House press release reported US Vice President Joe Biden as saying.

WASHINGTON, November 21 (Sputnik) — Washington will work with its allies to impose additional costs on Moscow if Russia continues to violate Ukraine's sovereignty, US Vice President Joe Biden stated Thursday during his meeting with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

'The Vice President noted that the United States would work with its European and G-7 partners to increase the costs to Russia if it continues on its current course of blatantly violating Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, and its obligations under the Minsk agreement,' the White House press release reads.

According to the release, Biden and Yatsenyuk discussed the formation of the new Ukrainian government, the reform agenda, the situation in the east, and energy security.

'The [US] Vice President underscored that the United States would work with its partners and the IMF to help secure the financial support Ukraine needs as it stabilizes its economy and pursues necessary reforms,' the release said.

Biden is currently in Kiev where he is meeting with Ukrainian authorities. Earlier in the day he made an announcement about an additional $23 million in aid to help Kiev with the implementation of reforms and EU integration, as well as in its fight against corruption.

The United States has already pledged almost $320 million in assistance to Ukraine in 2014, including this new commitment. In May, Washington issued a $1 billion sovereign loan guarantee to stabilize Ukraine's economy after it was crippled by months of protests and military conflict in the southeast.

The crisis in Ukraine escalated when Kiev authorities launched a military operation against independence supporters in eastern Ukraine in mid-April. The offensive triggered a humanitarian crisis in the affected areas, prompting Russia to send in several humanitarian convoys with food, fuel and medicine.

The Minsk talks on September 5 led to a ceasefire agreement between Kiev and People's Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk. However, despite the agreement, the opposing sides have repeatedly accused one another of the ceasefire regime violations.

Over the past few months, the United States has implemented several rounds of sanctions against Russia over the country's alleged involvement in the Ukrainian crisis — a claim Moscow has repeatedly denied. Washington also persuaded its allies to add Russian companies and individuals to their own blacklists. The sanctions particularly targeted defense, energy and banking sectors of Russian economy.

Moscow has repeatedly said that sanctions 'threaten international peace and stability' and run counter to the principles of international law.


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