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Obama: Ukrainian people do not have to choose between East and West

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Charlie Spiering,Barack Obama,Russia,Ukraine,Netherlands

President Obama rejects the idea that the Ukrainian conflict with Russia should be seen through Cold War lenses as East vs. West.

"The United States does not view Europe as a battleground between East and West, nor do we see the situation in Ukraine as a zero-sum game,” Obama said in an interview with Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant. "That's the kind of thinking that should have ended with the Cold War. The Ukrainian people do not have to choose between East and West.”

A translation of the interview was provided by the White House.

Obama added that Russia's actions in Ukraine were "simply unacceptable" and that there would have to be "consequences."

"If Russia continues to escalate the situation, we need to be prepared to impose a greater cost,” he said.

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