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USAID administrator: Russia-Ukraine conflict has become something of a world war ‘in terms of effects’

Samantha Power, nominee to be Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development
Greg Nash

U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Samantha Power on Sunday said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has become something of a World War “in terms of effects,” with the conflict now in its ninth week.

Power, during an interview with anchor George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s “This Week,” said the impacts of the Russia-Ukraine conflict are spreading beyond Kyiv and even Europe, with food prices spiking in a number of countries.

She said USAID has asked for a “substantial increase in humanitarian assistance” as a result, emphasizing the need for financial support from Congress. Stephanopoulos then likened her descriptions of the conflict’s effects to that of a world war.

“Listening to you lay out these consequences, it’s hard not to conclude that in some respects this is already become something of a world war,” Stephanopoulos said.

“Certainly in terms of effects, not confined to the horrors that the Ukrainian people are suffering,” Power added.

The administrator said the conflict, not sanctions, are driving food prices up, despite what Russia may try to argue.

“And Russia tries to take advantage of this and say, oh, it’s the sanctions that are causing these high food prices. Not at all. It is Russian’s invasion of Ukraine for no reason and its unwillingness now to come to the negotiating table and get out of Ukraine and get back to Russia,” she said.

“That is what is causing these cascading effects, so we want to meet those effects but continue to ensure that that pressure is put on the Russian Federation through economic sanctions and through the security assistance so that they finally negotiate a peace,” she added.

More than 5.4 million refugees have fled Ukraine since the invasion began, with the majority of individuals relocating in Poland, according to the United Nation Refugee Agency.

Power on Sunday said Ukraine’s neighbors have handled the influx of refugees “remarkably well.”

Tags George Stephanopoulos Samantha Power
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