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McCain says Ukraine should make Putin 'nervous'

Feb. 23, 2014 at 1:36 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Feb. 23 (UPI) -- An outspoken U.S. lawmaker said Sunday that a potential division of Ukraine was not something that Ukrainians wanted.

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said on CBS' "Face the Nation" that it would be a miscalculation by Russia to assume their strategically important neighbor could be divided into separate pro-Russian and pro-Western states.

"The Ukrainian people will determine their own future," McCain said. "They want to be Western ... they do not want to be eastern."

McCain, who visited the Ukraine last year, said he understood why Russian President Vladimir Putin would be nervous about the turmoil that forced his counterpart, Viktor Yanukovych, from office this weekend in what Yanukovych called a coup.

"The people of Russia have watched this transpire and are tired of the crony capitalism that governs Russia today," McCain said. "If I were him, I would be a little nervous, too."

© 2014 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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