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 Ukraine opposes advanced force, needs lethal arms, - US Congressman Quigley

Two U.S. lawmakers, Senator Dick Durbin and Congressman Mike Quigley, say the time has come for the United States to supply Ukraine with lethal weapons to better defend itself against Moscow-backed separatists.

Censor.NET reports referring to RFE/RL.

Read more: Poroshenko meets with Senator Durbin and Congressman Quigley. PHOTO

In an interview in Kyiv on Feb. 22, Durbin (Democrat-Illinois) told RFE/RL that the conflict in eastern Ukraine has "reached a point now where we have to be honest."

"What [the Russians] continue to do in eastern Ukraine, in Donetsk, gives no indication they're backing off," he said. "We have to give to Ukraine the tools and weapons they need to protect their own people."

Among other things, Durbin cited Putin's recent order formally accepting "passports" and identity documents issued by the separatists who control parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in eastern Ukraine.

"That says to me he has no plans of leaving [Ukraine] soon," he said.

Read more: US Congressman Thornberry hopes Trump Administration to provide lethal aid to Ukraine

U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (Democrat-Illinois), who spoke to RFE/RL along with Durbin, said that lethal arms were necessary "because it is a new world and there's new technology out there, and [the Ukrainians] are competing against an advanced force."

Durbin and Quigley said they would appeal to Congress, where they said there was bipartisan support for helping Ukraine.

Read more: McCain to Trump: Obama was too soft, let's give lethal weapons to Ukraine

Senior U.S. officials including Vice President Mike Pence and Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, have both recently delivered strong statements of support for Ukraine and called out Russia for its aggression here.

So far, Washington has provided Kyiv with only nonlethal assistance, including military training.
 
 
 
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