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The Foreign Press Centers’ Ukraine and Russia Series provides foreign journalists with background, context, and detailed information on the U.S. government’s response to the Russian Federation’s unprovoked and unjustified war against Ukraine as well as the views of senior U.S. government officials and U.S. experts on Russian disinformation.

Visit United with Ukraine to learn about the Department’s other work supporting Ukraine.


On August 12, 2022, the Washington Foreign Press Center hosted a background briefing on Russia’s attempted annexation of parts of Ukraine with a senior government official.  The senior government official provided new information on Russia’s attempts to legitimize its malign actions in Ukraine through planning “sham referendums.” They also discussed recent opinion polls that clearly demonstrate that the Ukrainian people do not want to join Russia, disproving Russian propaganda on this topic.

On August 10, 2022, the Washington Foreign Press Center hosted an on-the-record hybrid briefing on The Economic Impact of Sanctions on Russia with Yale Professors Jeffrey Sonnenfeld and Steven Tian. Professors Sonnenfeld and Tian’s briefed on their research, including the Foreign Policy article “Actually, the Russian Economy Is Imploding,” which has received extensive coverage in recent weeks. Participants asked about energy shortages in Europe, access to information in Russia, budget deficits, and the long term economic impacts of sanctions.

U.S. Sanctions on Russia
Sanctions Briefing

On July 13, 2022, Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Molly Montgomery, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs Erik Woodhouse, and Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation Affairs Gonzalo Suarez discussed the sanctions the United States has imposed on the Russian Federation, in close coordination with Allies and partners, on account of Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified war on Ukraine.  DAS Montgomery is responsible for U.S. relations with Western Europe and the European Union. DAS Woodhouse is responsible for counter threat finance and sanctions. Acting DAS Suarez oversees ISN’s counterproliferation efforts in the areas of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) and dual-use technologies.

On July 7, 2022, the Washington FPC hosted an on-the-record, in-person briefing with Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Douglas D. Jones, where he discussed key outcomes from the Madrid Summit and next steps with Ukraine and Russia. Deputy Assistant Secretary Jones answered questions about the PRC as a strategic threat to NATO, force posture deployments, security challenges from the south, prospects for Georgian membership, holding Russia accountable for stealing Ukrainian grain, and broader security for non-NATO members in the Caucasus.

In this on-the-record, hybrid briefing on June 15, 2022, Ambassador-at-Large for Global Criminal Justice (GCJ) Beth Van Schaack briefed foreign media on war crimes and accountability in Ukraine and discussed U.S. policy and efforts to hold the Russian Federation accountable for these crimes.

On June 8, 2022 Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs Karen Donfried provided a 45-minute, on-the-record, live streamed briefing on U.S. policy on Russia and Ukraine and the big picture of our relationship with Europe as the NATO Summit approaches. Journalists posed questions regarding the U.S.-NATO alliance, the impact of the war on global food security, and European unity, among others

Since 2019, the number of people facing acute food insecurity has more than doubled, driven by COVID-related supply shocks and climate impacts, and exacerbated by regional conflicts. On May 16, 2022, Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield discussed why, for a second time, she will bring a spotlight to rising global food insecurity during the United States’ rotating presidency of the UN Security Council. Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield previews a Ministerial Summit on May 18 convened by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, as well as a May 19 Security Council Open Debate called by the United States. She additionally previews other events happening during the U.S.-led Days of Action on Global Food Security. These Days of Action aim to rally the world to take steps to bolster food supply chains and mitigate the worst impacts of the global food security crisis.

This April 29, 2022, briefing discusses the work of the partnership between Smithsonian’s Cultural Rescue Initiative (SCRI) and the Cultural Heritage Monitoring Lab (CHML) at the Virginia Museum of Natural History, as they race to help Ukraine protect its national treasures threatened by the conflict.  The CHML/SCRI team of archaeologists, historians, and high-tech mapping experts are monitoring over 26,000 cultural heritage sites in Ukraine, using satellite imagery to help protect heritage sites, alert Ukrainian officials to damage, and help officials track attacks.  This effort began in April 2021, and it employs a combination of remote sensing, open-source research, and satellite imagery tasking to gather evidence of cultural heritage damage. The partners have released an impact report, which provides a summary of potential impacts to cultural heritage sites following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.  The initiative is supported by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

This briefing, which took place on April 27, 2022, unpacks the Russia-China disinformation nexus, with a focus on the Global South, as well as the countries’ increasing information warfare campaigns, within the context of Russia’s 2022 invasion of Ukraine.

Anne Neuberger, Deputy Assistant to the President and Deputy National Security Advisor for Cyber and Emerging Technology, traveled to New York City on April 19, 2022, to continue the Biden-Harris Administration’s engagement with international partners on responsible state behavior in cyberspace. She met with various government and UN officials to discuss norms of responsible state behavior, opportunities to enhance shared cybersecurity capacity to address threats, and Russia’s use of malicious cyber activity in support of its unjustified war in Ukraine. Her trip builds on the Biden Administration’s ongoing work to build international cooperation to address cyber threats. This press briefing serves as a readout of her engagements.

On April 7, 2022, in this on-the-record telephonic briefing Assistant Secretary for Economic and Business Affairs Ramin Toloui discusses global food security in light of the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine and the steps the U.S. government is taking to address the issue.

U.S. Sanctions on Russia
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In this on background briefing on March 18, 2022, senior State Department officials discussed the sanctions the United States has implemented against the Russian Federation for its premeditated and unprovoked war against Ukraine and the close U.S. coordination with our Allies and partners on those sanctions.

On Thursday, March 3, 2022, the FPC hosted an in-person, on-the-record briefing for selected Russian media, where Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs (EUR) Christopher Robinson provided an overview of current U.S. policy on President Putin’s premeditated and unprovoked attack on Ukraine.

On January 24, 2022, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield discusses the United States’ intensive diplomatic engagement with Ukraine, Russia, our partners, and allies, as it seeks to avert a crisis of peace and security, not just for Ukraine and Europe, but for every UN Member State.

Russian Disinformation
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In this background telephonic briefing on January 22, 2022, two senior State Department officials provide a brief overview of the Russia-Ukraine situation, including U.S. diplomatic efforts with Allies and partners, and discuss Russian disinformation in the context of ongoing U.S. efforts to deter further aggression against Ukraine.

 

U.S. Department of State

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