Washington: The ongoing situation between Russia and Ukraine would not have occurred under the Trump administration, former US President Donald Trump said on Monday.
“What’s happening with Russia and Ukraine would never have happened under the Trump administration. Not even a possibility,” Trump said in a statement.
Tensions between Russia and Ukraine amid a buildup of forces near the border have sparked discussions of further US involvement in the European security situation, including by supplying great military aid to Ukraine as deterrence to a potential invasion.
Russia has resolutely denied that it intends to attack any country and has warned NATO that its activities near Russia’s borders are a national security threat while Moscow reserves the right to move forces on its territory.
The Trump administration requested in its fiscal year 2021 budget some $317 million in aid to Ukraine, including providing military assistance, and later it did provide $1.5 million in assistance to improve Ukraine’s special operations forces training facilities.
However, the US House of Representatives in December of 2019 also voted to impeach Trump for abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for allegedly freezing military aid to Ukraine in order to press Kiev to probe political rival Joe Biden. The Senate then acquitted Trump on all articles of impeachment.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in July of 2020 during testimony to the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the Trump administration supported increasing lethal aid to Ukraine.
NATO said on Monday that it’s putting extra forces on standby and sending more ships and fighter jets to eastern Europe as Russia continues its troop build-up near Ukraine.
It said that it’s beefing up its “deterrence” presence in the Baltic Sea area. A number of members of the 30-country military organization have offered troops and equipment.