Obama’s Next ‘Red Line’

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Taking a direct shot at Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Obama told the leader Monday that the U.S. would impose additional sanctions on Kremlin officials if they don’t stand down in Ukraine.

“If Russia continues to intervene in Ukraine, we stand ready to impose further sanctions,” Obama warned, shortly after his administration issued economic punishments against those close to Putin.

“The future of Ukraine must be decided by the people of Ukraine,” Obama said in brief remarks from the White House.

The U.S. earlier Monday froze the assets of seven Russian government officials and four separatist leaders, including the self-appointed prime minister of Crimea and the former prime minister of Ukraine.

The president sought to paint Russia into a corner, saying Putin would feel the effects of his go-it-alone approach to Ukraine.

“Further provocations will do nothing except to further isolate Russia and diminish its place in the world,” Obama said from the briefing room.

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