US awaits Zelenskyy’s endorsement of declaring Russia ‘an aggressor state’

21 December 2022, 11:37 PM
Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo:REUTERS/Viacheslav Ratynskyi/File Photo)

Volodymyr Zelenskyy (Photo:REUTERS/Viacheslav Ratynskyi/File Photo)

The United States is waiting for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to approve the plans to officially declare Russia “an aggressor state,” CNN reported on Dec. 21.

According to CNN's sources, if Zelenskyy approves the proposal, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi could introduce the move as a separate bill by Dec. 25.

CNN reports that the draft proposal includes harsh sanctions against high-ranking Russian officials involved in the tactics of the “aggressor state”. The White House and U.S. Congress have been working on this draft for several months.

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The White House decided against recognizing Russia as a state sponsor of terror, in an attempt to avoid "negative consequences" for diplomatic relations between Washington and Moscow. CNN writes it could have affected talks about prisoner exchanges, the Ukrainian graine export agreement, assistance to Syria, among other topics.

Earlier, The Hill reported that the bill on the "aggressor state" is designed as an alternative to recognizing Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism, which wasn’t supported by the Biden administration.

On Dec. 21, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy arrived in Washington with his first international visit since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Zelenskyy is scheduled to have a meeting with his U.S. counterpart, and will later address a joint session of the U.S. Congress.

Zelenskyy has previously said that Russia currently presents the greatest terrorist threat to the world.

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