Last Updated: April 7, 2022
Supporting Ukraine’s Sovereignty and Territorial Integrity
Moscow’s actions in Ukraine threaten to set new precedents on European soil, undermining these basic international principles vital to peace and security:
- The borders and territorial integrity of a state cannot be changed by force.
- Citizens in a democracy have an inherent right to determine their country’s future.
- All members of the international community are bound by common rules and must face consequences if they break their solemn commitments.
These principles extend beyond Ukraine.
They principles extend beyond Europe.
These principles are the underpinnings of the international order that together the United States and our Allies and partners have built and sustained.
In challenging these principles, Russia challenges the international system itself and unravels our transatlantic alliance, erodes our unity, pressure democracies into failure.
Diplomacy is the only responsible way to resolve this crisis.
Since 2014, the United States has committed more than $7.3 billion in assistance to Ukraine, including security and non-security assistance. In addition, the United States provided three sovereign loan guarantees totaling $3 billion.
On March 15, President Biden signed the bipartisan Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act to provide an additional $13.6 billion in military, humanitarian, and economic assistance to help Ukraine defend itself from Russia’s unprovoked further invasion, ensure the Government of Ukraine can function effectively during the conflict and support the people of Ukraine as they endure attacks from Russia’s forces. Assistance funded through the Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act will also be made available to countries affected by the Ukraine crisis.
With the resources provided in the Ukraine Supplemental package, the President has announced a total of $1 billion in security assistance to provide Ukraine with the weapons it needs to effectively defend itself.
The United States is the largest single-country donor of humanitarian assistance to Ukraine. The United States has already provided nearly $653 million in humanitarian assistance to vulnerable communities in the region since Russia first invaded Ukraine eight years ago, including nearly $302 million this year.
On March 24, the President announced the United States is prepared to provide more than $1 billion in new funding toward humanitarian assistance for those affected by Russia’s war in Ukraine and its severe impacts around the world, including a rise in food insecurity.
The United States will welcome up to 100,000 Ukrainian citizens and others fleeing Russia’s aggression. To meet this commitment, the United States is considering the full range of legal pathways, including the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program, humanitarian parole, and visas.
Individuals seeking to leave Ukraine can find information from UNHCR on where to go for help.
The State Department has partnered with GoFundMe.org to address the humanitarian needs of the people affected by Russia’s attack against Ukraine.
On March 8, the United States banned the import of Russian energy products. This is another step to deprive President Putin of the economic resources he uses to continue his needless war of choice. The United States will continue to coordinate with major oil consumers and producers towards a collective investment to secure stability and global energy supplies, including for Ukraine. Read more about our efforts to assure energy security through diplomacy.
The Department of the Treasury is also expanding its Russia-sanctions authorities. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with Secretary Blinken, identified the aerospace, marine, and electronics sectors of the Russian Federation economy pursuant to Executive Order 14024. This allows sanctions to be imposed on any individual or entity determined to operate or have operated in any of those sectors and provides an expanded ability to swiftly impose additional economic costs on Russia for its war of choice in Ukraine.
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Celebrating Ukraine’s Unique Identity and Culture
For 20 years, the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) has supported more than 1,000 projects in 130+ countries. The United States has invested over $1.7 million in 18 cultural preservation projects in Ukraine.
Reaffirming the Value of Democratic Principles and Institutions
The United States reaffirms its unwavering support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, extending to its territorial waters.
The U.S.-Ukraine relationship serves as a cornerstone for security, democracy, and human rights in Ukraine and the broader region.
We will continue to support Ukraine in its efforts to advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations and to restore and secure Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.
Lasting peace and prosperity require respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of countries and respect for human rights. These principles are enshrined in the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration on Human Rights – foundational documents of the international rules-based order.
NATO has been the cornerstone of an unprecedented period of peace and prosperity for more than 70 years, while the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) remains the only fully inclusive trans-Atlantic/European/Eurasian political organization, where all participating states have committed to upholding democracy, rule of law, human rights, tolerance, pluralism, and media freedoms.
Ukraine, Georgia, and all other states in Europe have the right to choose the best futures for their people – including through their work and aspiration to join the Euro-Atlantic community and NATO.
Thirty years ago, the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s legislature, made a bold choice , to chart a new course for Ukraine as an independent, democratic, and sovereign state centered on European values.
Ukraine won freedom from the Soviet Union’s totalitarian dictatorship because of the Ukrainians’ love of liberty. This love of liberty runs deep in Ukrainian history, since the days of Volodymyr the Great.
The United States and Ukraine share a desire for a bright and prosperous future for all Ukrainians. The United States remains strongly committed to supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and to helping Ukraine advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations.
Exposing Russia’s Destabilizing Actions
Over the past three decades, Russia has invaded three neighboring countries – Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova – interfered in elections, used chemical weapons to attempt assassinations both on foreign soil and domestically (Skripal, Navalny), and violated international arms control agreements. We cannot forget Russia’s illegal seizure and ongoing occupation of Crimea, or the conflict in eastern Ukraine, which Russia-led and supported forces instigated and continue to fuel to this day. The United States is committed to a diplomatic resolution to the Donbas conflict and actively supports progress on implementation of the Minsk agreements, to which Russia is a signatory.
For more information on the history of Russia’s ongoing aggression towards Ukraine, see this interactive timeline for details of how Ukrainians continue to suffer from Russia’s actions.
In response to Russia’s aggression, the United States, along with our allies and partners, is imposing severe and immediate economic penalties on Russia. These measures include sweeping financial sanctions that will have an immediate impact on Russia’s economy and export controls that will cut off Russia’s access to vital technological inputs, atrophy its industrial base, and undercut its ambitions to exert influence on the world stage.
Civilians Continue to Suffer as Russia’s Aggression Against Ukraine Intensifies
In 2014, after millions of Ukrainians protested for a democratic and European future, Russia manufactured a crisis, invaded and occupied Ukraine’s territory in Crimea, and orchestrated a war in eastern Ukraine with proxies it leads, trains, supplies, and finances.
By the end of 2021, 2.9 million Ukrainians remain in desperate need of assistance and protection in a humanitarian catastrophe that demands more attention from the international community.
Russian propaganda efforts include:
- malign social media operations,
- overt and covert online Russia-supported media outlets,
- the infection of TV and radio programming with disinformation,
- conferences designed to influence attendees into falsely believing that Ukraine – not Russia – is at fault for heightened tensions in the region,
- leveraging of cyber operations to deface media outlets and conduct “hack and release” operations – that is, hacking, and then releasing private data and communications.
The United States’ diplomatic efforts to de-escalate the tensions caused by Russia’s military buildup and continued aggression against Ukraine included:
- The Deputy Secretary’s January 10-12 participation in an extraordinary session of the U.S.-Russia bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue;
- consultations with NATO leadership, NATO Allies, and EU officials; and
- the first OSCE Permanent Council meeting of 2022 on January 13th, where Ambassador Michael Carpenter led U.S. participation.
The United States is closely coordinating with international partners to monitor the situation in Ukraine and will work with those partners to address humanitarian needs in Ukraine and the region. Our response will be based on an assessment of needs, in coordination with the Government of Ukraine, the United Nations and other humanitarian partners and donors. Our humanitarian partners seek to effectively deliver needs-based assistance with impartiality, humanity, neutrality, and independence.
U.S. humanitarian assistance includes providing food, safe drinking water, shelter, winterization services, emergency health care, and protection to communities affected by ongoing fighting.
We are working closely with European allies and partners on the front lines of our response — as well as international organizations and NGOs — to lessen the human suffering caused by Russia’s further invasion of Ukraine.
The State Department is engaging diplomatically to support neighboring countries to keep their borders open to those seeking international protection, including those who may experience communication barriers with border agents because of disability or other factors.
As in any refugee situation, we call on members of the international community to respond to the needs of those seeking protection at their borders in a way that is consistent with the principle of non-refoulement and their respective obligations under international law.
Vulnerable Populations and Human Rights
The United States believes the human rights situation in Ukraine will significantly deteriorate.
The U.S. government supports organizations that work with vulnerable populations in Ukraine, including Russian and Belarusian dissidents, journalists and anti-corruption activists, members of the LGBTQI+ community, women’s groups, persons with disabilities, and religious and ethnic minorities.
During Russia’s further invasion and consistent with our messages to all U.S. citizens to leave Ukraine, we have been in touch with the government of Ukraine as well as these organizations and have encouraged them to act on contingency plans to keep themselves and the people they work with safe.
We are in close contact with the government of Ukraine and international humanitarian organizations that serve displaced populations, including refugees and internally displaced persons. We will continue to engage with these international organizations as well support work to accommodate the needs of people in need of protection, including those who are particularly vulnerable to human rights abuses.
The U.S. government is monitoring the situation closely, coordinating with other donors, assessing the evolving humanitarian needs of the people of Ukraine, and liaising with partners to ensure that they are able to rapidly scale up or adjust assistance should needs require.
We are supporting protection efforts for members of groups vulnerable to human rights abuses, supporting efforts to maintain access to information and supporting efforts to document human rights violations and abuses so that perpetrators can be held accountable. In addition, we can refer individuals in some cases to various emergency assistance programs that offer relocation, medical expenses, or other unexpected costs.
As the President and Secretary of State have said, any U.S. citizens in Ukraine should leave immediately using commercial or other privately available transportation options. In addition, the State Department has issued a Travel Advisory urging U.S. citizens to depart immediately and not to travel to Ukraine due to the dangers posed by Russia’s military action.
Ahead of its invasion of Ukraine, the Russian government launched wide-scale malicious cyber activity against the Ukrainian government and banking systems.
The United States had already been working with the government of Ukraine and other partners in anticipation of this possibility. Since November, we further intensified our support to government of Ukraine network defenders, working to help them respond to and recover from cyber incidents and to strengthen the cyber resilience of critical infrastructure.
We are also cooperating with Allies and partners to disrupt and respond to malicious cyber activity. That includes work to share intelligence regarding malicious cyber techniques and ensure the global community is prepared to rapidly call out malicious cyber activity where appropriate. U.S. officials have met with colleagues across the region to discuss cyber resilience and deterrence of cyber-attacks and to ensure we are prepared to address any cyber-related contingency.
The global community must be prepared to shine a light on malicious cyber activity and be prepared to hold actors accountable. As President Biden has said repeatedly, if Russia attacks the United States or our Allies through asymmetric means, such as disruptive cyber activity targeting our companies or critical infrastructure, we are prepared to respond.
The President has said that every tool is on the table to protect American businesses and consumers from rising prices at the gas pump. We will continue to coordinate with major oil-producing consumers and producers towards a collective investment to secure stability and global energy supplies.
We’ve intentionally calibrated our sanctions measures to maximize pain on the Russian economy and minimize economic effects to the U.S. and our allies and partners. U.S. sanctions are not designed to disrupt the flow of energy from Russia. We will carve out energy related payments on a time-bound basis to allow for orderly transition of these flows away from sanctioned institutions.
Russia will feel this pain. Putin and his cronies will feel this pain. It will accumulate over time. We’ve targeted Russia’s largest banks—cut them off from the U.S. financial system and frozen their assets. They will be blacklisted globally and the Russian financial system — its principal connection to international trade and investment — will be tarred.
Our export controls will choke off Russia’s vital technological imports. And Russia’s economy will suffer immediately, and more over time. This is not what we wanted to do. This is not the best outcome for the people of Ukraine or Russia. But Putin’s war of choice has required that he suffer the consequences of his actions.
The linkages between Russia and the U.S. economy are small. For those products or areas which we do source from Russia, we are confident that our industries are well supplied. U.S. sanctions are designed specifically to not disrupt the supply of global energy, while maximizing the pain for President Putin and the Russian state.
We’ve been pleased to see other public comments aligned with President Biden’s message, such as the recent public statements by G7 Leaders, the International Energy Agency’s Executive Director, Japan’s Prime Minister, Australia’s Minister of Industry and Energy, Germany’s Vice Chancellor and Minister of Economy, and a host of other officials—reflecting our common focus and willingness to address significant market volatility or supply shortages that may result from President Putin’s war of choice.
And if necessary, the United States is ready to move forward on an energy release from reserves and we are ready to coordinate with allies and partners to supply the market. Coordinated action at the outset gives us the best chance to reduce price spikes and shortages that may result from conflict.
President Biden is going to do everything he can to reduce the impact on energy costs for the American people. And that means engaging closely with partners around the world. It means considering a range of options that are all on the table to reduce the market — the impact on the oil markets, and that is what would impact energy costs.
Nord Stream 2
Russia’s flagrant violation of international law in repeatedly invading Ukraine’s sovereign territory demands a firm response from the international community. Germany’s decision to halt certification of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline – which the U.S. Administration has long opposed as a Russian geopolitical project – is an important element of that response. In this context, the Secretary has terminated the waiver of sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG, its CEO Matthias Warnig, and its corporate officers. NS2AG and Warnig are now sanctioned, and the company’s corporate officers are subject to visa restrictions. Other individuals and entities that knowingly engage in sanctionable conduct related to Nord Stream 2 face similar sanctions risk; we urge them to cease their activities.
The purpose of the waiver was to enable diplomacy with Germany to address the negative impacts of the pipeline, should it become operational. We have had strong diplomatic cooperation with Germany in these past months. As a result of Russia’s actions and Germany’s subsequent decision to halt the certification process for the pipeline, the Secretary has determined the waiver is no longer in the interest of the United States. This action follows through on the President’s commitment that Nord Stream 2 will not move forward following the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
In response to Russia’s aggression, the United States, along with our allies and partners, is imposing severe and immediate economic costs on Russia. These measures include sweeping financial sanctions that will have an immediate impact on its economy and export controls that will cut off Russia’s access to vital technological inputs, atrophy its industrial base, and undercut Russia’s strategic ambitions to exert influence on the world stage.
March 3, 2022
The Department of State designated Dmitry Peskov, the chief propagandist of the Russian Federation and Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson. The Department of the Treasury designated 26 individuals and seven entities associated with Russia’s global disinformation campaign, particularly those backed by Russian intelligence services.
The Department of State announced a new visa restriction policy to restrict the issuance of visas to certain Russian oligarchs, their family members, and close associates. In an initial action under this policy today, we targeted 19 oligarchs and 47 family members and close associates.
The Department of State sanctioned 22 defense-related firms. These far-reaching sanctions target entities that develop and produce fighter aircraft, infantry fighting vehicles, electronic warfare systems, missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles for Russia’s military. These sanctions strike at the core of Putin’s war machine.
The Department of Commerce imposed export controls on oil and gas extraction equipment that support Russia’s refining capacity. Because a significant portion of the Russian government’s revenue comes from the sale of oil and gas, these actions will degrade Russia’s ability to raise revenue to support and sustain its military aggression.
February 28, 2022
The U.S. cut off Russia’s largest bank from the U.S financial system and imposing full blocking sanctions on four other major Russian financial institutions, in addition to the two already sanctioned on February 22 – freezing any of their assets that touch the U.S. financial system. With these actions, the ten largest financial institutions in Russia are now under U.S. sanctions. Russia will see an immediate impact from these measures – capital flight, a weaker currency, rising inflation, higher borrowing costs, and reduced access to global financial markets.
We also imposed new financing restrictions on thirteen of the most critical Russian state-owned enterprises, including Gazprom. These entities, including companies critical to the Russian economy, are now barred from raising money through the U.S. market, which limits the Kremlin’s ability to raise money for its activity.
Our export control measures will cut off key Russian industries from vital U.S. technologies including semiconductors, telecommunications, lasers, avionics, and maritime technology. These measures primarily target Russian defense, aviation and maritime industries, sectors important to Russia’s long-term strategic interests. They will choke Russia’s import of technologies critical to a diversified economy and Putin’s ability to project power.
February 25, 2022
In coordination with allies and partners, the United States imposed sanctions on President Putin and three members of Russia’s Security Council directly responsible for the further invasion of Ukraine: Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov, Minister of Defense Sergei Shoigu, and First Deputy Minister of Defense and Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation Valery Gerasimov.
Our Allies in Europe and elsewhere are also imposing sanctions on Russia. Instead of dividing the United States from its Allies and partners, Russia’s actions have united the world and further isolated it. We have been coordinating with the European Union, the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Australia, and others to ensure our collective, coordinated response imposes steep costs on Russia.