(BLOOMBERG) — Vladimir Putin said he sees no immediate need to invade eastern Ukraine as the Obama administration prepares $1 billion in loan guarantees for the cash-strapped nation and threatens sanctions against Russia.
In his first public remarks since Ukraine said its Crimean peninsula had been taken over by Russian forces, President Putin said he reserved the right to use force to defend ethnic Russians while there’s “no such necessity” at present. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Kiev to offer an aid package to Ukraine’s interim government, as President Barack Obama challenged Putin’s rationale for intervening.
“Clearly Putin would like to lower some of the rhetoric,” Paul Denoon, who oversees $29 billion of emerging-market debt at New York-based AllianceBernstein Holding LP, said today by phone. “But I don’t think he’s signaled a new direction in his intentions. We still think there’s a risk of escalation.”
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