Monday, March 3, 2014

Global Impact: West Boycotts Paralympic Games in Sochi, US Likely to Impose Sanctions, EU to Meet

According to The Associated Press, the US announced Monday (March 3) that it would boycott the upcoming Paralympic Games in Sochi to protest Russia’s incursion into Ukraine.

US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said it was “likely” that the US would also impose sanctions on Russia.

The boycott effectively means a presidential delegation will not be attending the games, an announcement that comes as President Obama and Congress scramble to respond to Russia’s act of aggression on Ukrainian in Crimea. 

COMMENT: British government officials are also boycotting the Winter Paralympics in Sochi, according to AFP.  Prime Minister David Cameron said Sunday he thought it would be “wrong” for government ministers to go to the Games given the unfolding events in Ukraine.

The boycott is the first definite measure Western leaders have taken to isolate Russia following Putin’s unprovoked attack in Crimea. Other measures discussed include expelling Russia from the G8 (which also includes the US, UK, France, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada) and imposing economic sanctions on the country.

The UN Security Council plans to meet this week to discuss political developments in the Ukraine. In addition, the EU's 28 leaders will hold an emergency summit on Ukraine on Thursday (March 6).