|Video of Remarks President J Biden 2-22-2222 CSPAN|
With remarkable speed, President Biden has responded to the recent Russian military and diplomatic actions in Ukraine. The remarks make good on US promises of swift response to Russian movement in Ukraine and were crafted in part to respond to the narrative projections of Mr. Putin's much longer weaving of historical-political justification for Russian ambitions for territorial adjustment (see HERE).
The full transcript of President Biden's roughly nine-minute speech as reported by USDA Today (Transcript: President Biden delivers remarks on U.S. sanctions, Putin's advancements into Ukraine),
(3) Executive Order on Blocking Property of Certain Persons and Prohibiting Certain Transactions With Respect to Continued Russian Efforts to Undermine the Sovereignty and Territorial Integrity of Ukraine.
Well, good afternoon.
Yesterday, Vladimir Putin recognized two regions of Ukraine as independent states. And he bizarrely asserted that these regions are no longer part of Ukraine and their sovereign territory. To put it simply, Russia just announced that it is carving out a big chunk of Ukraine.
Last night, Putin authorized Russian forces to deploy into the regions, these regions. Today, he asserted that these regions are actually, extend deeper than the two areas he recognized, claiming large areas currently under the jurisdiction of the Ukraine government. He’s setting up a rationale to take more territory by force, in my view. And if we listen to his speech last night, and many of you did I know, he's setting up a rationale to go much further.
This is the beginning of a Russian invasion of Ukraine as he indicated and asked permission to be able to do from his Duma. So, what began, so, I'm going to begin to oppose sanctions in response far beyond the steps we and our allies and partners implemented in 2014. And if Russia goes further with this invasion, we stand prepared to go further as with sanctions. Who in the Lord's name does Putin think gives him the right to declare new so-called countries on territory that belongs to his neighbors? This is a flagrant violation of international law and demands a firm response from the international community.
Over the last few months, we've coordinated closely with our NATO allies and partners in Europe and around the world to prepare that response. We said all along and I told Putin to his face more than a month ago that we would act, together, the moment Russia moved against Ukraine. Russia has now undeniably moved against Ukraine by declaring these independent states.
So today, I'm announcing the first tranche of sanctions to impose costs on Russia in response to their actions yesterday. These have been closely coordinated with our allies and partners and we’ll continue to escalate sanctions if Russia escalates. We're implementing full blocking sanctions on two large Russian financial institutions – VEB and their military bank. We’re implementing comprehensive sanctions on Russian sovereign debt. That means we've cut off Russia's government from Western financing. It can no longer raise money from the West and cannot trade in its new debt on our markets or European markets either.
Starting tomorrow, and continuing in the days ahead, we’ll also impose sanctions on Russia’s elites and their family members. They share in the corrupt gains of the Kremlin policies and should share in the pain as well. Because of Russia’s actions, we have worked with Germany to ensure Nord Stream 2 will not – as I promised – will not move forward. As Russia contemplates its next move, we have our next move prepared as well. Russia will pay an even steeper price if it continues its aggression, including additional sanctions.
The United States will continue to provide defensive assistance to Ukraine in the meantime and will continue to reinforce and reassure our NATO allies. Today, in response to Russia's admission that it will not withdraw its forces from Belarus, I have authorized additional movements of U.S. forces and equipment already stationed in Europe to strengthen our Baltic Allies: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania. Let me be clear. These are totally defensive moves on our part. We have no intention of fighting Russia. We want to send an unmistakable message though that the United States together with our allies will defend every inch of NATO territory and abide by the commitments we made to NATO.
We still believe that Russia's poised to go much further in launching a massive military attack against Ukraine. Hope I'm wrong about that. Hope we're wrong about that. But Russia’s only escalating this threat against the rest of Ukrainian territory including major cities and including the capital city Kyiv. There are still well over 150,000 Russian troops surrounding Ukraine. And as I said, Russian forces remain positioned in Belarus to attack Ukraine from the North, including warplanes and offensive missile systems. Russia’s moved troops closer to Ukraine’s border with Russia. Russia's naval vessels are maneuvering in the Black Sea to Ukraine’s south including amphibious assault ships, missile cruisers, and submarines. Russia's moved supplies and blood and medical equipment into position on the border. You don't need blood unless you plan on starting a war.
Over the last few days, we've seen much of the playbook that Secretary (of State Antony) Blinken laid out last week at the United Nations Security Council come to pass. A major increase in military provocations, and false flag events along the line of contact in the Dombas. Dramatically staged, conveniently on camera meeting of Putin’s Security Council to grandstand for the Russian public. And now, political provocation recognizing sovereign Ukrainian territory of so-called independent republics in clear violation, again, of international law. President Putin has sought authorization from the Russian parliament to use military force outside of Russian territory. And this set the stage for further pretexts, further provocations by Russia to try to justify further military action. None of us, none of us should be fooled. None of us will be fooled. There is no justification. Further Russian assault into Ukraine remains a severe threat in the days ahead. And if Russia proceeds, it its Russian and Russia alone that bears responsibility.
As we respond, my administration is using every tool at our disposal to protect American businesses and consumers from rising prices at the pump. As I said last week, defending freedom will have costs for us as well here at home. We need to be honest about that. But as we will do, but as we do this, I'm going to take robust action to make sure the pain of our sanctions is targeted at the Russian economy, not ours.
We're closely monitoring energy supplies for any disruption. We're executing a plan in coordination with major oil producing consumers and producers toward a collective investment to secure stability and global energy supplies. This’ll blunt gas prices. I want to limit the pain American people are feeling at the gas pump. This is critical to me.
In the last few days, I've been in constant contact with European leaders including with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy. Vice President Harris met in person with the leaders in Germany over the weekend at the Munich Conference including president Zelenskyy. At every step, we have shown the United States and our allies and partners are working in unison, which he hasn't been counting on, Mr. Putin.
We're united in our support of Ukraine. We are united in our opposition to Russian aggression. And we are united in our resolve to defend our NATO alliance. And we're united in our understanding of the urgency and seriousness of the threat Russia is making to global peace and stability.
Yesterday, the world heard clearly, the full extent of Vladimir Putin's twisted rewrite of history. Going back more than a century as he waxed eloquently, noting that.. well, I'm not going to go into it. But nothing in Putin's lengthy remarks indicate any interest in pursuing real dialogue on European security in the year 2022. He directly attacked Ukraine's right to exist. He indirectly threatened territory formerly held by Russia, including nation's that today are thriving democracies and members of NATO. He explicitly threatened war unless his extreme demands were met. And there is no question that Russia is the aggressor.
So, we're clear-eyed about the challenges we're facing. Nonetheless, there is still time to avert the worst-case scenario that will bring untold suffering onto millions of people if they move as suggested. The United States and our allies and partners remain open to diplomacy if it is serious. When all is said and done, we're going to judge Russia by its actions, not its words. And whatever Russia does next, we're ready to respond with unity, clarity and conviction. We'll probably have more to say about this as it moves on. I am hoping diplomacy's still available.
FACT SHEET: Executive Order to Impose Costs for President Putin’s Action to Recognize So-Called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics
Today, President Biden signed an Executive Order (E.O.) to respond to President Putin’s action to purportedly recognize the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DNR and LNR) as “independent” states. President Putin’s action contradicts Russia’s commitments under the Minsk agreements, refutes Russia’s claimed commitment to diplomacy, and undermines Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
This E.O. is distinct from the swift and severe economic measures we are prepared to issue with Allies and partners in response to a further Russian invasion of Ukraine. We are continuing to closely consult with Ukraine and with Allies and partners on next steps and urge Russia to immediately deescalate.
Today’s E.O. prohibits:
- New investment in the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine by a United States person, wherever located;
- The importation into the United States, directly or indirectly, of any goods, services, or technology from the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine;
- The exportation, reexportation, sale, or supply, directly or indirectly, from the United States, or by a United States person, wherever located, of any goods, services, or technology to the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine;
- And any approval, financing, facilitation, or guarantee by a United States person, wherever located, of a transaction by a foreign person where the transaction by that foreign person would be covered by these prohibitions if performed by a United States person or within the United States.
The E.O. also provides authority to impose sanctions on persons determined:
- To operate or have operated since the date of the order in the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine;
- To be or have been since the date of the order a leader, official, senior executive officer, or member of the board of directors of an entity operating in the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine;
- To be owned or controlled by, or to have acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order;
- Or to have materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order.
The Department of the Treasury is issuing six General Licenses to ensure that humanitarian and other related activity can continue in these regions:
- The purpose of this E.O. is to deny Russia the chance to profit from its blatant violations of international law. These actions are not directed at the people of Ukraine or the Ukrainian government.
- Treasury’s General Licenses are designed to support the innocent people who live in the so-called DNR and LNR regions who did not have a choice in Russia’s destabilizing and illegitimate actions today.
- The licenses allow a short-term wind down of activities, as well as for the export to the regions of food, medicine and medical devices, and ensure personal remittances can continue to flow.
- The licenses also allow telecommunications and internet services to remain operational, and mail services to continue.
- The licenses allow international organizations to be able to provide aid to the people in these two regions.
The United States will not hesitate to use its authorities to target those supporting efforts to undermine Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. This authority provides the United States with the flexibility to impose similar restrictions on any other regions of Ukraine as appropriate.
Executive Order on Blocking Property of Certain Persons and
Prohibiting Certain Transactions With Respect to Continued Russian
Efforts to Undermine the Sovereignty and Territorial
Integrity of Ukraine
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States
of America, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et
seq.) (IEEPA), the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) (NEA), section 212(f) of
the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (8 U.S.C. 1182(f)), and section 301 of title 3,
United States Code,
I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, hereby expand the scope
of the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13660 of March 6, 2014, and expanded
by Executive Order 13661 of March 16, 2014, and Executive Order 13662 of March 20, 2014,
and relied on for additional steps taken in Executive Order 13685 of December 19, 2014, and
Executive Order 13849 of September 20, 2018, finding that the Russian Federation’s purported
recognition of the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) or Luhansk People’s Republic
(LNR) regions of Ukraine contradicts Russia’s commitments under the Minsk agreements andfurther threatens the peace, stability, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and thereby
constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the
United States. Accordingly, I hereby order:
Section 1. (a) The following are prohibited:
(i) new investment in the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine or such other
regions of Ukraine as may be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with
the Secretary of State (collectively, the “Covered Regions”), by a United States person, wherever
(ii) the importation into the United States, directly or indirectly, of any goods, services,
or technology from the Covered Regions;
(iii) the exportation, reexportation, sale, or supply, directly or indirectly, from the United
States, or by a United States person, wherever located, of any goods, services, or technology
to the Covered Regions; and
(iv) any approval, financing, facilitation, or guarantee by a United States person,
wherever located, of a transaction by a foreign person where the transaction by that foreign
person would be prohibited by this section if performed by a United States person or within the
(b) The prohibitions in subsection (a) of this section apply except to the extent provided by
statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order,
and notwithstanding any contract entered into or license or permit granted prior to the date of this
Sec. 2. (a) All property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter
come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of
any United States person (including any foreign branch) of the following persons are blocked
and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in: any person
determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State:
(i) to operate or have operated since the date of this order in the Covered Regions;
(ii) to be or have been since the date of this order a leader, official, senior executiveofficer, or member of the board of directors of an entity operating in the Covered Regions;
(iii) to be owned or controlled by, or to have acted or purported to act for or on behalf of,
directly or indirectly, any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant
to this order; or
(iv) to have materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or
technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, any person whose property
and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order.
(b) The prohibitions in subsection (a) of this section apply except to the extent provided by
statutes, or in regulations, orders, directives, or licenses that may be issued pursuant to this order,
and notwithstanding any contract entered into or any license or permit granted prior to the date of
Sec. 3. The prohibitions in section 2 of this order include but are not limited to:
(a) the making of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services by, to, or for the
benefit of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order;
(b) the receipt of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from any such
Sec. 4. (a) Any transaction that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, causes
a violation of, or attempts to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order is prohibited.
(b) Any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this order is
Sec. 5. Nothing in this order shall prohibit transactions for the conduct of the official business of
the Federal Government by employees, grantees, or contractors thereof.
Sec. 6. (a) The unrestricted immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of
noncitizens determined to meet one or more of the criteria in section 2 of this order would be
detrimental to the interests of the United States, and the entry of such persons into the UnitedStates, as immigrants or nonimmigrants, is hereby suspended, except where the Secretary of
State or the Secretary of Homeland Security, as appropriate, determines that the person’s entry
would not be contrary to the interests of the United States, including when the Secretary of State
or the Secretary of Homeland Security, as appropriate, so determines, based on a
recommendation of the Attorney General, that the person’s entry would further important United
States law enforcement objectives.
(b) The Secretary of State shall implement this authority as it applies to visas pursuant to
such procedures as the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland
Security, may establish.
(c) The Secretary of Homeland Security shall implement this order as it applies to the entry
of noncitizens pursuant to such procedures as the Secretary of Homeland Security, in
consultation with the Secretary of State, may establish.
(d) Such persons shall be treated by this section in the same manner as persons covered by
section 1 of Proclamation 8693 of July 24, 2011 (Suspension of Entry of Aliens Subject to
United Nations Security Council Travel Bans and International Emergency Economic Powers
Sec. 7. I hereby determine that the making of donations of the types of articles specified in
section 203(b)(2) of IEEPA (50 U.S.C. 1702(b)(2)) by, to, or for the benefit of any person whose
property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order would seriously impair my
ability to deal with the national emergency declared in Executive Order 13660, expanded in
Executive Orders 13661 and 13662, and further expanded by this order, and I hereby prohibit
such donations as provided by section 2 of this order.
Sec. 8. For the purposes of this order:
(a) the term “entity” means a partnership, association, trust, joint venture, corporation, group,
subgroup, or other organization;
(b) the term “person” means an individual or entity;
(c) the term “United States person” means any United States citizen, lawful permanent
resident, entity organized under the laws of the United States or any jurisdiction within theUnited States (including foreign branches), or any person in the United States;
(d) the term “noncitizen” means any person who is not a citizen or noncitizen national of the
United States; and
(e) the term “region of Ukraine” includes the land territory in that region as well as any
maritime area over which sovereignty, sovereign rights, or jurisdiction is claimed based on
purported sovereignty over that land territory or area.
Sec. 9. For those persons whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this
order who might have a constitutional presence in the United States, I find that because of the
ability to transfer funds or other assets instantaneously, prior notice to such persons of measures
to be taken pursuant to this order would render those measures ineffectual. I therefore determine
that for these measures to be effective in addressing the national emergency declared in
Executive Order 13660, expanded in Executive Orders 13661 and 13662, and further expanded
by this order, there need be no prior notice of a listing or determination made pursuant to section
2 of this order.
Sec. 10. The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is hereby
authorized to take such actions, including the promulgation of rules and regulations, and to
employ all powers granted to the President by IEEPA, as may be necessary to carry out the
purposes of this order. The Secretary of the Treasury may, consistent with applicable law,
redelegate any of these functions within the Department of the Treasury. All executive
departments and agencies of the United States shall take all appropriate measures within their
authority to implement this order.
Sec. 11. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof;
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to
budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to theavailability of appropriations.
(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or
procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its
departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.
JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.
THE WHITE HOUSE,
February 21, 2022.