Kerry condemns Russia's 'invasion and occupation of Ukrainian territory'
March 1st, 2014
08:16 PM ET
9 years ago

Kerry condemns Russia's 'invasion and occupation of Ukrainian territory'

Secretary of State John Kerry issued the following statement on the situation in Ukraine:

"The United States condemns the Russian Federation's invasion and occupation of Ukrainian territory, and its violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity in full contravention of Russia’s obligations under the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, its 1997 military basing agreement with Ukraine, and the 1994 Budapest Memorandum. This action is a threat to the peace and security of Ukraine, and the wider region.

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I spoke with President Turchynov this morning to assure him he had the strong support of the United States and commend the new government for showing the utmost restraint in the face of the clear and present danger to the integrity of their state, and the assaults on their sovereignty. We also urge that the Government of Ukraine continue to make clear, as it has from throughout this crisis, its commitment to protect the rights of all Ukrainians and uphold its international obligations.

As President Obama has said, we call for Russia to withdraw its forces back to bases, refrain from interference elsewhere in Ukraine, and support international mediation to address any legitimate issues regarding the protection of minority rights or security.

From day one, we've made clear that we recognize and respect Russia’s ties to Ukraine and its concerns about treatment of ethnic Russians. But these concerns can and must be addressed in a way that does not violate Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, by directly engaging the Government of Ukraine.

Unless immediate and concrete steps are taken by Russia to deescalate tensions, the effect on U.S.-Russian relations and on Russia’s international standing will be profound.
I convened a call this afternoon with my counterparts from around the world, to coordinate on next steps. We were unified in our assessment and will work closely together to support Ukraine and its people at this historic hour.

In the coming days, emergency consultations will commence in the UN Security Council, the North Atlantic Council, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in defense of the underlying principles critical to the maintenance of international peace and security. We continue to believe in the importance of an international presence from the UN or OSCE to gather facts, monitor for violations or abuses and help protect rights. As a leading member of both organizations, Russia can actively participate and make sure its interests are taken into account.

The people of Ukraine want nothing more than the right to define their own future – peacefully, politically and in stability. They must have the international community’s full support at this vital moment. The United States stands with them, as we have for 22 years, in seeing their rights restored."

Filed under: John Kerry • Ukraine
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. Tampa Tim

    The government was shut down by not changing certain parts of the ACA, which changes the Democratic President made any way after the shut down. Tell it like is really is!!! The shut down never would have happened.

    Ted Cruz and 80 republicans in congress demanded that ACA would be completely repealed or they would shut down government. You don't remember the GOBaggers cheering when they shut it down? Of course you do.

    March 2, 2014 06:42 am at 6:42 am |
  2. liberal disease

    who is going to listen to this wealthy wind bag talk down to you? at some point if you want to do something you have to prove you are strong militarial and have the stomach to act, under Obama we have neither, so we should be quiet.

    March 2, 2014 06:50 am at 6:50 am |
  3. Dar

    The United States stands with them, as we have for 22 years, in seeing their rights restored."

    Unless Putin says BOO, then Obama will call in the big guns, That's right people, THE BEER SUMMIT, Yup, he will do it and the Putin will have no choice but to drink and have a hang over the next day, that will teach him to mess with Obama!!!

    March 2, 2014 06:58 am at 6:58 am |
  4. Dick

    You tell them John. A very difficult situation. But bring them to the table. That is the only way to resolve this.

    March 2, 2014 07:15 am at 7:15 am |
  5. mike

    The US is now well positioned against Russia. Kerry has slapped a carbon tax on Vladimir Putin for using diesel run tanks outside of his country. We are the world leaders.

    March 2, 2014 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  6. edward

    So Obama, Kerry and the EU condemn Russia in Ukraine. You and I may not like it, but Obama and the EU will do nothing and this will show the rest of the world we just say things but do nothing like Syria and Iran. Diplomacy will not work. Iran is still making its nuclear bombs if you think they are not your stupidity is beyond belief. Do you think or did you think Russia will listen to USA. I think not. When Obama said if Assad in Syria crosses the red line and use chemical weapons USA would us military action. Assad used chemical weapons over 14 times and Obama did nothing to back up what he said. Regardless if you believe in military intervention, when a president says he will use it if a red line is crossed and he does not carry through with his own words it makes him look weak and America look week. I am American and am ashamed of our president and country. America is not the country it wants was. A God fearing moral country and the people had back bone. Now the country has immoral spineless materialist godless cowards. Then you see brain washed Obama robots that's think his poop smells like roses and think he is the greatest. God help your stupidity

    March 2, 2014 07:31 am at 7:31 am |
  7. Gurgyl

    -–at this time involve all international communities, UK, Germany, France, Poland, Italy, Australia etc. It is an act if aggression on Russia nonetheless they don't have enough Bread to eat. Tell, These home front Republican idiots that USA can't afford another war. They need to be united with this administration.

    March 2, 2014 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  8. Marie MD

    Now let the UN and NATO make decisions. We don't have to invade every country on Earth.

    March 2, 2014 07:47 am at 7:47 am |
  9. Solomon Walker

    God Almight Kerry...Sir – as you preach your sermon, why not tell your fellow Americans how you keep a criminal attorney on retainer just in case that you are ever actually charged with the crimes that you commit.

    Perhaps that will help for you to remember who you really are.

    You have not been successful in any situation for these United States since taking office – ineffective in your position as Hillary Clinton was – why not pack your bags and exit.

    You are quite the oppugnant one, the legal beagle barking at the world's leaders as though you have some secret magic to restore peace to all the earth. Why, you appear to be seeking righteous sovereignty, here. Holy Roman Emperor Kerry?

    Seems to me that you are trouble-making more than attempting to resolve anything, which tends to show that the Obama administration is inciting various conflicts around the globe , which creates enemies throughout the planet.

    There is nothing in your action that promotes peace in the world, but your colleagues are terribly insistent on placing our courageous troops at risk of death without so much as a second thought – and without Congressional approval – again. While the military budget is slashed and young enlisted lose the ability to get ahead.

    You are incompetent, Mr. Kerry.

    Might I add – where are all the political songs as those written during the 1960's, that spread the word of government or political corruption to the people? My, my, how silenced the voice of the people has become in 2014.

    "Just gaze up at the Almighty John Kerry, that one day you may consider swearing him in as sovereign...and it will be good."

    March 2, 2014 08:06 am at 8:06 am |
  10. WillB

    Nobody (s) listen to any of the new words Kerry learned over the weak end. Hopefully, he'll run out of them very soon.

    March 2, 2014 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  11. Dale Little

    Words are just that...words. I'm sure the people of the Ukraine are feeling so much safer now and Putin is shaking in his boots. Reagan said, "Tear down this wall" and they did. How far we have fallen in 25 years or so. When the world is in need of a Reagan or a Churchill, all we have are Neville Chamberlains.

    March 2, 2014 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  12. DC Observer

    Russia moves troops into Ukraine; and Kerry fires back with political diplomatic words. What an embarrassment.

    Russia knows that the US cannot and will not do anything other than to make speeches for political purposes, and hurl insults and make empty threats. Obama says there will be costs...but fails to specify what those are - more empty threats. Obama's national security advisors meet March 1 at the White House on the crisis, but Obama is off fund raising and does not attend the meeting.

    This week President Obama will probably make a big speech on this and make the Ukraine people a promise: If you want to keep your country, you can keep your country - period! The US does less than 2% of its trade with Russia, so any sort of trade sanctions are also empty threats worth nothing. I 'd rather have Sarah Palin in charge, for it is clear that neither Obama or Kerry can see Russia from their lofty perch

    March 2, 2014 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  13. rla

    Kerry, Hagal, Hillary, Reid, Pelosi, Schumer??? Anyone listening anymore?

    March 2, 2014 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  14. Tasuja

    At the same time we are sending drones to attack other nations. What hypocrisy!!!!

    March 2, 2014 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  15. z

    The U.S. should use this opportunity to invade and occupy a few of its neighbors such as Cuba and Venezuela. If its OK for Russia to do it, why not US.

    March 2, 2014 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  16. uncleric

    NATO/USA must act against Russia NOW.
    Merely threatening not to participate in the G20 (or whatever) conference is pathetic.
    Ukraine needs tangible support NOW!

    The USA trumps Russia in military armaments.
    Merely showing up and play 'War Games' in the Black Sea would be sufficient to cause Russia to pause.

    Do we really need to stomach the distinct possibility of loosing Ukraine?

    March 2, 2014 09:00 am at 9:00 am |
  17. Lou Salerno

    From the speech: "From day one, we've made clear that we recognize and respect Russia’s ties to Ukraine and its concerns about treatment of ethnic Russians. But these concerns can and must be addressed in a way that does not violate Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, by directly engaging the Government of Ukraine..."

    I would suggest to Mr Kerry that having a couple thousand Russian troops occupying parts of Ukraine is, in fact, engaging the government of Ukraine, just not the kind of "engagement" he seems to be hoping for.

    March 2, 2014 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  18. John

    Hey Kerry, send them a stern warning like killary used to!

    March 2, 2014 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  19. mark

    This is terrible! Almost as bad as global warming. Obama did give the russians a very stern look though.

    March 2, 2014 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  20. William

    To paraphrase then: Stop! Or I'll say Stop again……..

    March 2, 2014 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  21. Jim

    Looks like another land grab from Russia. WW3 and tea anybody?

    March 2, 2014 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  22. Richard Pearce

    Listening to a spokesperson for a government that has invaded countries under false pretenses, threatens war on a nation that is doing nothing but insisting that it can do what the international agreement that it and the US have signed says it can do, backs the overthrow of democratic governments, had no problem with the invasion of Bahrain to support a dictatorship, express his government's outrage at Russia's actions reminds me of the outrage Republicans express at Obama using executive orders in the same way Bush did.

    March 2, 2014 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  23. u laby

    (Yawn!) Why bother saying anything?? No one believes this administration anyways. More empty words only serve to embarrass the administration. Putin does't drone on endlessly from a teleprompter. He just acts. Surprising that Russia invading a country is not seen as a 'weapon of mass destruction'. What a joke.

    March 2, 2014 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  24. Realist59

    One thing we can all agree on, we can not expect Obama to solve Ukraine and Russia's problems, we elected Obama to fix our problems, and we are fully aware that Obama was a neighborhood organizer, who could not even organize the neighborhood he was organizing.

    March 2, 2014 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  25. njudgemental

    Is anyone listening to Kerry?

    March 2, 2014 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
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