Rep. King: 'Putin was involved'

Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) said Sunday that “there can be no reasonable doubt” that Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, were involved in the downing of a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet last week in eastern Ukraine.

“By supplying this type of weaponry to a group of thugs like Ukrainian separatists, you have to bear responsibility for what happens after that. And this really is a game changer, King, a member of the House Homeland Security and Intelligence committees, said on CBS.

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“I think Secretary Kerry laid out the case against Russia – there can be no reasonable doubt now that Russia was involved, Putin was involved,” he said.

King said Putin has violated “civil rights norms,” adding that the U.S. has to take “very severe” economic sanctions. “Symbolic” sanctions should be on the table too, he added.

“For instance, I think we should talk about the World Cup. Why should countries be going to Moscow? Why should, for instance, Aeroflot be allowed to continue to have landing rights?” he asked.

King said he’s disappointed in many European allies, but credited British Prime Minister David Cameron for a statement today blasting countries “who somehow want to go back to a Munich-type mentality and assume that this is going to disappear.”

“This is going to go away. It’s not. They have to stand up to Putin.”

King said Putin has shown “he’s really incapable of functioning in a civilized world” by blocking access to the crash site.

“This is going back to the days of Stalin, and Khrushchev and Brezhnev and the way he’s responding to a crisis which he caused, which everyone knows he did and yet he goes underground,” he said. “This is what a mafia guy does. This is what a goon does. Not a world leader, not someone in the civilized world”