U.S. may ban recognition of Russian sovereignty over Crimea
A bill has been submitted to the U.S. Congress, which prohibits the U.S. government from recognizing Russia’s sovereignty over annexed Crimea.
The author of the document, which was published on the website of the U.S. Congress, is the representative of the Democratic Party from Virginia, Gerry Connolly.
“To prohibit United States Government recognition of the Russian Federation’s claim of sovereignty over Crimea, and for other purposes,” the document reads.
The text of the document has not yet been made public yet. As noted on the website, on February 8 the bill was presented to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
If the document is adopted by the House of Representatives, it will be submitted to the Senate.
The U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan said that the United States and the European Union do not plan to ease sanctions against Russia, imposed, in particular, due to the annexation of Ukrainian Crimea.
In February 2014, armed people in uniforms without insignias appeared in Crimea and captured the Supreme Council of Crimea, the Simferopol Airport, the Kerch ferry crossing and other strategic objects, and prevented the Ukrainian army from taking action. Initially, the Russian government refused to acknowledge that these armed people were Russian soldiers, but President Vladimir Putin later admitted it.
On 16 March 2014, a referendum on the status of Crimea was held in Crimea and Sevastopol, in which the inhabitants supposedly voted for the peninsula to become part of Russia. The outcome of the so-called referendum is not recognized by Ukraine, the EU or the US. On 18 March, 2014, Putin announced the “annexation” of Crimea to Russia.
International organizations have declared the annexation illegal and condemned Russia’s actions. Western countries have imposed economic sanctions on Russia in connection with the annexation. Russia claims to have “restored historical justice”. Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, declared 20 February 2014 the start of Russia’s temporary occupation of Crimea and Sevastopol.