His message was published in English and Russian on the third day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, in a short black and white video clip bearing the State Department logo.
“To the Russian people: You deserve to live in security and dignity like all people anywhere,” Blinken’s letter read.
“No one is trying to jeopardize that. You do not deserve a pointless war with your neighbors, friends and family in Ukraine,” the foreign minister added.
He concluded, “The people of Ukraine deserve to live in peace, just as you deserve it.”
State Department spokesman Ned Price retweeted the short video, adding, “A message to the Russian people: We don’t blame you for your government’s actions.”
Earlier, the US Secretary of State stressed that Ukraine is a sovereign country, and that the United States and Ukraine have been partners since Ukraine declared its independence from the Soviet Union more than 30 years ago.
Blinken added that after Russia invaded and partially occupied Ukraine in 2014, the United States intensified its efforts to help Ukraine deter further Russian aggression and, if necessary, to defend itself against additional attacks.
Blinken emphasized that today, “while Ukraine bravely fights brutal and unprovoked Russian aggression,” it authorized a third unprecedented presidential withdrawal of up to $350 million in immediate support for Ukraine’s defense.
As a threat to Ukraine emerged last December, an additional $200 million withdrawal was authorized.
This brings the total security assistance committed by the United States to Ukraine over the past year to more than $1 billion.