In the Obama administration’s first comments after Russia took control of Crimea early Tuesday morning, Vice President Joe Biden said Russia’s recent actions in Ukraine had left it “alone” and “naked” in front of the rest of the world.
Speaking at a press conference in Poland with Prime Minister Donald Tusk, Biden said Russia isolated itself through its veto of a United Nations Security Council resolution condemning the recent Crimean resolution to secede from Ukraine as illegitimate.
“Even China decided it could not support it, and abstained,” Biden said, according to a White House pool report. “And Russia, Russia stood alone, naked in front of the world for the aggression they had undertaken.”
Biden is on a swing through Europe to “reassure our allies” who are concerned about Russia’s aggressive actions in Ukraine, one senior administration official told reporters. The first day of his trip coincided with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s address to both houses of the Kremlin legislature, where he announced Crimea would become part of Russia.
In his press conference, Biden said the U.S. condemns the “blatant, blatant disregard of international law by Mr. Putin.”
Afterwards, Biden met with Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski. According to the press pool report, Biden told him, “It’s an important day. We need to stand together.”
The White House announced Tuesday morning that President Barack Obama had invited other members of the G-7 to a meeting next week in Europe, which will focus on the situation in Ukraine.
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