Trump Admin Declines to Blame Russia for Fighting in East Ukraine

Which would have been truly absurd, but that never stopped Obama

Thu, Feb 2, 2017
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If Kiev hoped that by restarting fighting in East Ukraine it would force the new US president to pick a side it has (so far) failed. Unlike Obama Trump's administration is not rushing to back Kiev at all:

White House spokesman Sean Spicer had little to say on Wednesday when asked for the administration's position on the renewed fighting that began over the weekend and persisted into early Wednesday. At least 10 people have been killed and dozens wounded. President Donald Trump has been "kept aware of developments" in Ukraine, Spicer said, and the White House will "have further updates as we go on." It was not immediately clear when those updates would come.

In fact even the State Department has been uncharacteristically diplomatic:

"On Tuesday, the State Department responded to the violence in Ukraine but omitted any mention of Russia in a six-sentence statement that called for an immediate cease-fire and full implementation of the agreements meant to outline a political resolution to the crisis."

"The omission of Russia from the responses contrasted sharply with statements by the Obama administration, which sharply criticized Moscow for supporting and even directing attacks by the separatists, and not fulfilling its obligations under the 2015 truce plan signed in Minsk, Belarus."

"During the last surge in violence in December, former State Department spokesman John Kirby had gone far further, accusing Moscow of backing "a Russian separatist attempt to seize additional Ukrainian territory."

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Instead of blasting Russia when it's obviously their guys who started the fighting the US is this time merely calling for a return to ceasefire and for Minsk II to be implemented -- exactly Russia's own position. This is refreshing. Let's see if it lasts.

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