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U.S. threatens Putin with strengthening of sanctions

Violation of the Minsk Agreement by Russia will trigger strengthening of sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union. It was stated by William Thornberry, Chairman of the Committee on Armed Services of the House of Representatives and a member of the Republican Party.

The politician said the United States President Barack Obama had not yet established his position on the issue of assistance to Ukraine in the form of providing lethal weapons, Joinfo.ua reports with reference to the Voice of America.

"The president (Obama) has not yet decided whether he supports providing additional defensive lethal assistance to Ukraine, but there is a great deal of support in Congress. The Minsk agreements are violated every day – it should tell us something," said Thornberry.

He also stressed that the armed conflict in the Donbas threatened the stability throughout the world. "We have helped Ukraine before, we will help today and tomorrow – but it is a partner's help, when there are common values and a partner can use the help for his own purposes … We want to provide assistance so that the Ukrainian armed forces be effective," said Thornberry.

"I think that Russia had already crossed the "red line" when it invaded Ukraine, when it occupied Crimea, when it continues to send tanks, as well as its military to the east of Ukraine. I believe that the "red line" had been crossed, but the Ukrainians have demonstrated the ability to defend their country," said the politician.

He underlined that his current visit to Ukraine and the visit of his colleagues helped to understand the situation better. "I will report all this in the Congress, when I get back to Washington," he concluded.