Valley Congressman supports arming Ukraine

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As a member of the House Intelligence Committee Nunes has access to confidential information on the world's trouble spots. (KFSN)

There's a cease fire between Russian backed forces and the Ukrainian military, but skirmishes continue and Russian backed troops and so called "Russian volunteers" are still on the move in eastern Ukraine. Valley Congressman Devin Nunes has visited Ukraine and the Baltics and said Russia is a feared threat.

Nunes said, "I can tell you those governments are scared to death that Putin is going to invade those countries again, especially the Baltics, the Poles."

As a member of the House Intelligence Committee Nunes has access to confidential information on the world's trouble spots. Last week he joined members of congress from both parties in urging President Obama to provide weapons to Ukraine.

Nunes told Action News, "It's a dangerous situation, I have called for arming the Ukrainians, giving them some more sophisticated weapons so they can fight the Russians."

While the President has approved sending drones and trucks, he fears giving weapons will prompt Russia to be more aggressive. But Ukrainians argue they need a stronger deterrence. Fresno resident Vladimir Ostatnigrosh is from Ukraine. He believes military assistance is needed.

"Ukraine needs weapon," said Ostatnigrosh. "And if United States can give Ukraine weapon and teach Ukrainian soldiers how to use them it will be good."

Ostatnigrosh is a former Soviet and Ukranian fencing champion. He now owns The Fresno Fencing Academy. He believes Russia wants to keep Ukraine under its thumb. Nunes believes the only way to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin is to show strength by helping Ukraine defend itself.

Nunes explained, "I'm not afraid of Putin, right, so I don't know what the big deal is, Putin is clearly the aggressor in this, the Ukrainians are trying to do the right thing."

Ostatnigrosh believes 80 percent of Ukranians in both the western and eastern portions of the country want to keep their country together, without Russian interference.

"Ukrainians are peaceful people," said Ostatnigrosh. "They don't want to conquer anybody they want to live in peace with everybody but if somebody takes something from them, they will fight."





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