WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama called for a stronger response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea on Tuesday and said the U.S. should support Ukraine’s “right to self-determination” as well as its efforts to “restore the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.”
The White House statement from Obama’s National Security Council comes just days after a deadly rally in which Russian troops marched onto the Crimean parliament building and occupied the Crimean Parliament building, which has been under Russian control since March.
The White Senate announced that a bipartisan group of senators would send a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin asking for a cease-fire in Crimea.
Obama said the letter also asks that the U-S.
impose sanctions on Russia.
In the wake of the violence, the White House called for an “urgent” review of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1867, which passed unanimously last week.
The resolution calls for the United Nations Security Council to investigate Russian actions in Crimea, but has not been acted upon.
“Russia’s actions today are intolerable,” Obama said.
“They are a clear violation of the international community’s commitments to the sovereignty of the Ukrainian people and the territorial integrity and autonomy of Ukraine, and a clear attack on the sovereignty, territorial integrity, and political independence of Ukraine.”
I have directed the President to convene a meeting of the United States’ Security Council in the coming days to assess the circumstances in Crimea and to review our response.
The President will be making his final determination as to how best to respond.
“Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said the parliament building had been occupied by Russian troops.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said the soldiers were in Crimea but said there was no evidence they had taken over the building.
Ukrainians protest outside the Crimean government building, where members of the Crimean legislature have been attacked and occupied by armed men.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Vitali Klitschko said on Twitter that the parliament was under attack.