US, NATO must stay out of Ukraine: Ron Paul
Former American presidential candidate Ron Paul says it will be in the best interest of the Ukrainian people if all foreign entities, including the United States and NATO states, stay out of the country.
The former Texas congressman made the remarks during a speech at the International Students for Liberty Conference in Washington on Friday, following a video address by NSA surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden.
“Crimea is not exactly a foreign country, according to the Russians. But I’m neutral on that,” he said, referring to the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, which declared independence from Ukraine and officially became part of the Russian territory in March last year.
Ties between Washington and Moscow deteriorated last year after pro-Western forces ousted Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych in February 2014.
Paul said last year that the government of Yanukovych had been replaced in a “fascist coup” and that its subsequent military moves against rebels were legal.
Paul stated that Ukraine should focus on its economic situation and external debt in order to improve itself.
Paul, who is considered to be the face of the libertarian movement, is a critic of the US foreign policy and wants an end to Washington’s “meddling” in the affairs of other countries, particularly in Ukraine.
The US and its allies accuse Moscow of sending troops into eastern Ukraine in support of the pro-Russian forces. Moscow, however, denies any involvement.
The United States and the European Union have imposed several rounds of sanctions on Russia, including visa bans and asset freezes.