"Russia has decided, it seems, to rewrite its borders, but it cannot rewrite the facts," U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power said during today's UN Security Council meeting on Ukraine.
"The United States rejects Russia’s military intervention and land grab in Crimea. These actions, again, violate the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, Russia’s own binding agreements, international law, the expressed will of most members of this Council, and the letter and spirit of the United Nations Charter."
Ambassador Power continued, "We want to thank members of this Council for taking a strong stance on Russia's intervention in Ukraine and for making clear that Russia stands alone in its failed, illogical, and mendacious attempt to justify actions that cannot be justified. Five days ago, when this Council accurately described the Crimean separatist referendum as invalid, only a single hand rose in opposition. When this Council declared that the referendum cannot form the basis for any alteration of the status of Crimea, only a single hand rose in opposition. Now, the referendum has taken place, but the national and international legal status of Crimea has not changed. A thief can steal property, but that does not confer the right of ownership on the thief."
In closing, Ambassador Power said, "...Let me just emphasize again what Russia has done is wrong as a matter of law, wrong as a matter of history, wrong as a matter of policy, and dangerous. What happened in Crimea cannot be recognized as valid. We must stand together denying recognition and imposing consequences for this illegal act. In doing so, we must also be very clear that what happened in Crimea cannot be repeated in other parts of Ukraine."
You can read Ambassador Power's full remarks here.
For more information:
- Statement by the President on Ukraine, March 17, 2014
- Background Briefing by Senior Administration Officials on Ukraine, March 17, 2014
- White House Fact Sheet on Ukraine-Related Sanctions
- Executive Order -- Blocking Property of Additional Persons Contributing to the Situation in Ukraine
- Treasury Designates Four Individuals Involved in Violating Sovereignty in Ukraine
- United States Rejects ‘Referendum’ in Crimean Region of Ukraine
- U.S. Department of State Country Page on Ukraine