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Haley Slams Russian Occupation of Ukraine

In her first appearance before the UN Security Council, UN Ambassador from the United States Nikki Haley criticized Russia for violating Ukrainian territorial integrity, calling for the end of the Crimean occupation. Haley’s remarks differed from previous Trump administration suggestions, which indicated a softer tone on Russia’s actions.

“I consider it unfortunate that the occasion of my first appearance here is one in which I must condemn the aggressive actions of Russia,” Haley said.

While hoping that Russian and the United States could improve relations, Haley lamented Russian aggression as a “replay of far too many instances over many years.”

Haley also struck an assertive tone, labeling the presence of Russian forces in Ukraine as an “intervention.”

Haley told the Security Council: “The United States continues to condemn and call for an immediate end to the Russian occupation of Crimea. Crimea is a part of Ukraine. Our Crimea-related sanctions will remain in place until Russia returns control over the peninsula to Ukraine.”

Russian special forces seized control of Crimea from Ukraine following the ousting of pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych. After annexing Crimea following the questionable results of a Crimean referendum, Russia provided arms and support to pro-Russia rebels in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, leaving the country in a state of civil war since 2014.