Blinken arrives in Moldova with reassurances

Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony Blinken 5 things to know today about the Russia-Ukraine conflict While America watches the war in Ukraine, Biden finalizes a dangerous Iran deal Rick Scott on putting US troops in Ukraine: ‘I do not think you should ever take it off the table ‘MORE on Sunday promised to support Moldova as the former Soviet republic takes in Ukrainian refugees amid Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

“We admire the generosity, the hospitality, the willingness to be such good friends to people who are in distress, and indeed, we want to do everything we can to help you deal with the burden that this is imposing,” Blinken said of Moldova in remarks ahead of a meeting with the country’s Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilita.

The secretary of state also said that the US was “prepared to do everything we can in support of the Ukrainian people, in support of Ukraine’s neighbors who are standing up for the Ukrainian people and helping those in distress, those fleeing, and, of course , continuing to put pressure on President Putin and his government to change course. “

Since the invasion of Ukraine began just under two weeks ago, over 230,000 people have passed through or sought refuge in Moldova, according to The Associated Press.

Now, Moldovan officials have requested security assurances from a potential Russian attack as Moscow has a troop presence in the country’s disputed territory of Transnistria. Moldova has also requested international aid as it hosts over 120,000 Ukrainian refugees, the AP reported.

On March 3, Moldova, which is not a NATO member, also applied to join the European Union.

“We are committed to steer towards membership in the European Union,” Gavrilita said during the remarks with Blinken. “And as we embark on this journey, we know that we can count on the friendship and the strong support with the United States.”

Images emerged last week of Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko standing in front of a battle map that appeared to show a planned invasion of Moldova’s breakaway region of Transnistria.

Also on Sunday, Blinken said that the US is engaging in an “active discussion” over a possible ban on Russian oil imports.

“We are now talking to our European partners and allies to look into a coordinated way at the prospect of banning the import of Russian oil, while making sure that there is still an appropriate supply of oil on world markets,” Blinken said during an interview on CNN.

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