May 24, 2022

White House not ready to declare no-fly zone for Russia

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has told the D.C. outlet Axios Monday that his country “needs the West to impose a no-fly zone,” which is a significant escalation of the West’s involvement and could be seen as tantamount to an act of war, according to Breitbart News.

“The sanctions are heading in the right direction. In addition to disconnecting the Russian Central Bank from SWIFT and providing more Stingers and anti-tank weapons, we need the West to impose a no-fly zone over significant parts of Ukraine,” Zelensky said in a statement to Axios.

“Ukraine can beat the aggressor. We are proving this to the world. But our allies must also do their part,” he added.

The Biden administration appeared hesitant to get on board with Zelensky’s request, as White House press secretary Jen Psaki told MSNBC that it is “not something the president wants to do,” and “that’s not a good idea.”

“Well, here’s what’s important for everybody to know about a no-fly zone: What that would require is implementation by the U.S. military,” Psaki said. “It would essentially mean the U.S. military would be shooting down planes, Russian planes.”

“That is definitely escalatory,” she continued. “That would potentially put us into a place where we’re in a military conflict with Russia – that is not something the president wants to do.”

According to Axios, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told MSNBC that there are “no intentions” for the United States to take such action.

“We have no intentions of moving into Ukraine neither on the ground or in the airspace,” said Stoltenberg. “We have a responsibility to make sure that this doesn’t spiral out of control that escalates even further into concern for full-fledged war in Europe involving NATO allies.”

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