Joe Biden: ‘Putin Is The Aggressor’

Joe Biden: 'Putin Is The Aggressor'

The president condemned Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, unveiling new sanctions that he said American allies would amplify to pressure Moscow.

President Joe Biden on Thursday blasted Russian President Vladimir Putin and promised to punish him as Russian forces poured into Ukraine, sparking the heaviest fighting in Europe in decades.

“He rejected every good faith effort the United States and our partners and allies made for dialogue and to resolve our mutual security concerns without needless suffering,” Biden said. “Putin is the aggressor. Putin chose this war. And now he and his country will bear the consequences.”

Earlier in the day, the president consulted with a group of powerful U.S. allies that together comprise the G-7 ― a coalition including Germany, Japan, France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Canada that controls a large portion of the global economy.

Biden said the U.S. and its partners would cut off vital imports for Russia; make it much harder for the country to operate in American dollars and a range of other currencies; and sanction powerful Russians close to Putin.

On Thursday morning local time, the Russian leader announced that he was sending troops across his country’s vast borders with Ukraine. Russia bombarded Ukrainian cities and Russian forces began fighting Ukrainian soldiers soon afterward in an offensive that remains ongoing.

The Russian assault has so far killed dozens of Ukrainian civilians and 40 Ukrainian troops, Ukrainian ambassador to the U.S. Oksana Markarova told reporters in Washington on Thursday morning.

World leaders say the Russian invasion is an extreme, era-defining step that could have unimaginably dark consequences.

“Ukraine is a country that for decades has enjoyed freedom and democracy and the right to choose its own destiny. We ― and the world ― cannot allow that freedom just to be snuffed out,” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in a televised address.

Separately, French President Emmanuel Macron said, “Last night’s events are a turning point in the history of Europe and of our country. They will have profound, lasting consequences for our lives.”

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