Amb Power: Sanctions Haven’t Changed Russia’s ‘Calculus’ or Prevented ‘Escalation’

US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power stated that US sanctions and diplomatic isolation “have not yet changed Putin’s calculus” and that “we’re seeing dangerous escalation,” which “Putin needs to decide that he cares about the fate of his people” enough to stop on Friday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” on MSNBC.

Power said that Putin’s declaration that, according to host Andrea Mitchell’s characterization, “Ukraine is part of Russia,” “is consistent with the aggression that Putin has carried out, lopping off — trying to lop off Crimea and a large chunk of eastern Ukraine. And it’s consistent with some of the provocative actions that ships and airplanes are taking north of Europe. These are very, very worrying actions, very provocative.”

Power added that Russia’s actions are “ones, of course, that we have met with very, very severe economic sanctions and diplomatic isolation. Those sanctions have succeeded in making a huge impact, as you know, on Russia’s economy. But clearly, they have not yet changed Putin’s calculus. We are all invested in the Minsk process and ensuring the implementation of the Minsk Agreement, which Putin claims to still stand behind, but we’re seeing very dangerous escalation on the ground, and as you know, just in the last days, a real pick-up in the fighting in eastern Ukraine. So, we will continue to meet every action and the undermining of Ukraine’s stability with isolation and with sanctions, but fundamentally Russia needs to decide, and Putin needs to decide, that he cares about the fate of his people, the fate of his economy, and that he doesn’t want to take Russia down the path of ruin.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett