Mattis vows support for Ukraine but stops short of promising weapons

25 August, 2017, 01:41 | Author: Chad Mckenzie
  • Ukrainian independence

"On the defensive lethal weapons, we are actively reviewing it, I will go back now having seen the current situation and be able to inform the secretary of state and the president in very specific terms what I recommend for the direction ahead", Mattis told reporters, according to Reuters.

Critics fear sending sophisticated USA arms to a low-level conflict on Russia's border would worsen Washington's already perilous relations with Moscow.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson already has visited Kiev to show support.

The Iranian president also wished health and success for Poroshenko and prosperity and glory for the people of the European country.

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Mr Mattis said before the parade that the United States "stands with Ukraine" in its fight against Kremlin-backed separatists in the east of the country.

"Any defensive weapons, it would be just to increase the price if Russian Federation makes a decision to attack my troops and my territory", he said. "And that would be a strong motivation to stop them".

Georgian First Deputy Minister of Defense Lela Chikovani, who attended the parade, said that participation of Georgian soldiers was "an expression of our support to the Ukrainian people and the Ukrainian government, and of our unity".

Doing so was part of the Republican Party's platform at its convention past year until it was cut by the Trump campaign. "No decisions have been made". The two dozen troops are part of a multinational training group in Ukraine.

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While the White House has not yet issued any public record of the exchange, Pentagon chief Mattis's presence at Kiev's military parade was much more openly symbolic. He also cited other Russian commitments to Ukraine dating to 1994.

Under this agreement, the secretary said, Russian Federation and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation agreed to refrain from threatening or using force against each other or any other states, their sovereignty, territorial integrity or political independence.

Ukraine's State Security Service Spokesperson Olena Gitlyanska said the blast, which took place at around 2 pm, was most likely an act of hooliganism.

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