Monday, 21 August, 2017

Pence: 'We expect Russian behavior to change'

FILE – Vice President Mike Pence center on Capitol Hill in Washington Thursday FILE – Vice President Mike Pence center on Capitol Hill in Washington Thursday
Cecilia Poole | 01 August, 2017, 22:52

Pence said the us administration "stands firmly" behind Article 5 of the NATO treaty - the provision stating that an attack on one NATO country is an attack on all members of the alliance.

Touting Trump's decision to sign the sanctions legislation, Pence criticized Russian Federation for seeking "to redraw global borders by force, undermine the democracies of sovereign nations, and divide the free nations of Europe".

Pence was in Tallinn meeting with the presidents of Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia.

The US Senate passed a sanctions bill Thursday which includes a provision preventing the president from removing sanctions without congressional approval.

"At this very moment, Russian Federation continues to redraw global borders by force, undermine democracies of sovereign nations and divide the free nations of Europe one against another", Pence said during the joint press conference with presidents Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia, Raimonds Vejonis of Latvia, and Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania in Tallinn.

The presidents of three Baltic states met here Monday with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence on transatlantic relations, cyber issues and innovation.

The vice president and his wife, Karen Pence, arrived in the Estonian capital Tallinn to begin the European trip that also includes stops in Georgia and Montenegro.

To that end Pence will on Tuesday meet with USA and Georgian troops who are taking part in the Noble Partner 2017 exercises.

"We are committed to nations around the world that are committed to freedom", Pence assured Fox News.

US Vice President Mike Pence on Monday said Moscow's demand that Washington cut 755 American diplomatic staff in Russian Federation will not lessen the US commitment to its allies.

The new USA sanctions were in retaliation both for Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 and Russian interference in the U.S. election.

"The United States is now and will always be your greatest ally and your surest friend", Pence concluded.

Pence's remarks came before members of the US, French, British and Estonian militaries.

President Donald Trump campaigned heavily on the message of "America first", which has influenced his politics after moving into the Oval Office.

"The president of the United States is leading a coalition of nations to bring pressure to bear until that time that North Korea will permanently abandon its nuclear and ballistic missile program", he said.

Also targeted members of President Vladimir Putin's elite entourage. In fact he can really start to call the shots so I think from his point of view he is winning hands down.

In Georgia, Pence is expected to highlight USA support for its sovereignty and territorial integrity, the officials said.

There could, however, be an additional motivation driving the Pence visit to Georgia, added Omelicheva: "The US government may feel they made a mistake by not responding more assertively in the wake of the 2008 Russian-Georgian war".

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