Obama: US won't go it alone on sanctions

Obama: US won't go it alone on sanctions
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President Obama made clear on Sunday that the conflict in Ukraine is not one out of a Cold War playbook, maintaining the U.S. wouldn't move ahead on sectorial sanctions without Europe.

Moving forward on the harsher sectorial sanctions alone would not serve as an effective deterrent to Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinThe Memo: Russia tensions rise with Navalny's life in balance How to defeat Vladimir Putin Russian fighter jet intercepts US, Norwegian patrol aircraft over Barents Sea: report MORE, Obama said at a press conference in Malaysia.


"We’re going to be in a stronger position to deter Mr. Putin when he sees that the world is unified and the United States and Europe is unified, rather than this is just a U.S.-Russian conflict," Obama said.

Obama added that the portrayal of the present conflict through a "Cold War prism" was inaccurate.

"The issue is respecting basic international norms of sovereignty and territorial integrity," he said. "The issue is can the Ukrainians make their own decisions about how they govern themselves and who they have international relations with."

Now, Obama said, if Russia continues down its current path rather than attempting to resolve the issue peacefully, than the U.S. and Europe will keep "raising the consequences."

He went on to blast Russia for backpedaling on the Geneva accords, instead encouraging more unrest similar to that in eastern and southern Ukraine, where Russia and Ukraine continue to bulk up their troops.

On Friday G-7 leaders announced that they would be moving forward with a new round of sanctions on Russia, which may come as early as Monday.

The latest sanctions will hit not just the previously sanctioned individuals "but entities associated with them, so that could include banks and companies," said Ben Rhodes, White House deputy national security adviser. "So we believe that these sanctions can have a significant impact."