Russia Warns U.S. Against Supplying 'Lethal Defense Aid' To Ukraine
Moscow has warned Washington a potential policy shift from supplying Kiev with “non-lethal aid” to “defensive lethal weapons”, mulled as US Vice President visits Ukraine, would be a direct violation of all international agreements.
A Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that reports of possible deliveries of American“defensive weapons” to Ukraine would be viewed by Russia as a “very serious signal.”
“We heard repeated confirmations from the [US] administration, that it only supplies non-lethal aid to Ukraine. If there is a change of this policy, then we are talking about a serious destabilizing factor which could seriously affect the balance of power in the region,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesmanAleksandr Lukashevich cautioned.
His remarks follow US deputy National Security Advisor Tony Blinken Wednesday’s statement at a hearing before the Senate Committee for Foreign Affairs, in which he said that Biden may offer the provision of “lethal defensive weapons” as he visits Ukraine. Lethal assistance “remains on the table. It's something that we’re looking at,” Blinken said.
“We paid attention not only to such statements, but also to the trip of representatives of Ukrainian volunteer battalions to Washington, who tried to muster support of the US administration,” Lukashevich said.
The Ministry made it clear that such a move by Washington would violate a number of agreements.
“This is a very serious signal for several reasons. First of all, this is a direct violation of agreements, including the ones achieved in partnership with the United States. I mean the Geneva Declaration from 17 April,” said the Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko requested lethal aid from the US during a visit to Washington in September.