Boston (February 23, 2022) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) released the following statement after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s formal recognition of two separatist republics, Donetsk and Luhansk in the Donbas region of Eastern Ukraine, and President Joe Biden’s announcement of initial sanctions against Russia for this incursion.


“My heart is with the people of Ukraine as they endure a savage and illegal violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty by Vladimir Putin’s Russia. No country is allowed to draw new borders and use that as a pretext for an invasion. This is an unjustified incursion by Russia spurred by adventurism on the part of Putin, and the United States and our European allies have responded with unity and resolve to stand firm against his transgressions. 


“President Biden has wisely started implementing sanctions – our best non-military option – to impose consequences on the Kremlin, Russia’s defense sector, and Putin’s petro-oligarch cronies for this blatant violation of international law. U.S. allies have also stepped up to the plate with tough, targeted sanctions of their own.  If Russia’s incursion continues, more sanctions will follow.  While we must continue to provide unwavering support for Ukraine and our NATO allies in Europe, at the same time, President Biden is right to continue seeking a diplomatic resolution, despite the fact that time and again Putin has rejected compromise proposed by the Biden administration, NATO, and Ukraine.


“This is yet another example of the importance of eliminating U.S. and European reliance on Russian dirty energy as quickly as possible– Putin and his cronies continue to fill their pockets with dirty oil and gas money at the expense of Ukraine and European energy independence. Our global fossil fuel addiction is a catalyst for conflict, but a clean energy Green New Deal would be a pathway for peace. The United States must lead our European allies in the clean energy revolution to protect us all—from Russia and from the existential threat of climate change caused by dirty fossil fuels.”