Speaking of a 2003 agreement governing the Kerch Strait between the Azov Sea and Black Sea, Mattis said Moscow had shown "brazen contempt and dismissal" for the deal "that allowed both Russian and Ukrainian ships free passage".
Notably calling President Vladimir Putin out by name, Mattis said that Putin's actions have become a catalyst for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation countries to "rearm and to strengthen" on a unified and democratic level. "We will re-energize our arms control efforts, but the onus is on Russia", Mattis said.
The U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis has said the United States will stand with the 41 nations coalition committed to the ongoing efforts in Afghanistan.
Citing the unresolved standoff, President Donald Trump canceled a planned meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Group of 20 gathering in Buenos Aires that's now under way. USA prosecutors in October charged a Russian national with playing a financial role in a Kremlin-backed plan to conduct "information warfare" against the United States, including attempts to influence the midterm election.
That comment reiterated those he made several days prior that Russia's attack upon and seizure of three Ukrainian ships violated global law.
Defense Secretary James Mattis said Saturday that Russian Federation attempted to interfere in the U.S. midterm elections last month.
Mattis also asserted that Russian Federation had interfered in the November midterm elections for Congress, though he gave no details nor provided any further evidence.
"Mr. Putin is clearly a slow learner". "He is not recognizing that what he is doing is actually creating the animosity against his people".
While Trump spoke briefly with Putin on the sidelines of the summit, he chose to cancel the two leaders' formal meeting.