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US supplies of lethal weapons to Ukraine will escalate conflict — Russian lawmaker

February 02, 2015, 21:54 UTC+3 MOSCOW

If this decision is taken, it might trigger further escalation of the conflict and it will mean than the US is embarking on the path of solving this situation by force, Konstantin Kosachev says

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© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, February 2. /TASS/. Supplies of lethal weapons from the United States, if such a decision is finally taken, will only aggravate tensions in eastern Ukraine, a Russian lawmaker said on Monday.

"If this decision is taken, it might trigger further escalation of the conflict and it will mean than the United States is embarking, after Kiev, on the path of solving this situation by force," Konstantin Kosachev, the chairman of the international committee of Russia’s Federation Council upper parliament house, told journalists, stressing that the way out of the Ukrainian crisis lied through talks only.

He reminded that a day ago the leaders of Ukraine, France and Germany had called to stop combat operations. "And at this very moment, we find ourselves on the brink of a decision to supply the Ukrainian army with lethal weapons. It will fight more actively with such weapons, it will continue to exterminate its own civil population, first of all, those who have found themselves hostages to this situation," Kosachev said.

He said escalation of tensions in eastern Ukraine was playing into the hand of Kiev, since it made it possible to postpone the moment when it will have "to give uncomfortable answers to uncomfortable questions" why the new team was failing to bring stability and improve the situation after almost a year in power. Nonetheless, the lawmaker expressed the hope that lethal weapons would not be supplied to Ukraine.

On Sunday, the electronic edition of the New York Times said that General Phil Breedlove, Supreme Allied Commander Europe and Commander, US European Command, as well as many representatives of the Obama administration and Pentagon were looking at providing lethal military assistance to Ukraine. Germany’s government said it had information about United States’ plans to supply arms to Ukraine.

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