Lincoln Chafee questions US sanctions against Russia

Lincoln Chafee questions US sanctions against Russia
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Former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee (D) says there has to be better ways for the U.S. to get “rapprochement” with Russia than imposing sanctions.

“I don’t know about these sanctions. I should think that there would be better ways of getting rapprochement with Russia. They’re so important in the world and especially to the former Soviet republic, such as Ukraine,” Chafee said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

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Chafee announced a presidential bid for the Democratic ticket last week. He previously served in the Senate as a Republican and as an independent for part of his term as governor.

At the G-7 meeting in Germany Sunday, President Obama and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel called for sanctions against Russia to remain in place until Russian President Vladimir Putin implements a deal to end fighting in Ukraine. 

Asked how he would correct the U.S. relationship with Russia, Chafee used the opportunity to bash his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.

“Stop making mistakes that Secretary Clinton made when we were trying to restart our relations with Russia and Secretary Clinton presented the foreign minister with a symbolic gesture and they got the Russian word wrong. It’s those types of mistakes that set back a relationship — little symbolic mistakes.”

“We need to wage peace in this world,” said Chafee, who also last week refused to rule out talks with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.