US decides against labeling Russia a state sponsor of terrorism
Washington DC - The US government is not planning to categorize Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism, National Security Council communications chief John Kirby said on Tuesday.
The announcement came a day after US President Joe Biden told a reporter that his administration was not planning to give Russia the designation, though he gave no further details.
"We believe that it's just not the best and most efficient, most effective way to continue to hold Russia accountable," Kirby told reporters.
"It wasn't dismissed lightly. We looked at this seriously," Kirby added.
The US government considered the possible ramifications of such a designation, discussed the move with experts, and came to the conclusion that such a designation could actually hinder NGO efforts to get humanitarian support to Ukraine, he said.
Kirby added that the designation could have also negatively effected Ukraine's position at the negotiating table if talks with Russia were to resume.
Latvia's parliament recently categorized Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism, and the Ukrainian government has called on the US to do the same.
The US currently lists four countries are state sponsors of terrorism: Syria, Iran, North Korea, and Cuba, all of which are under corresponding US sanctions that affect development aid, arms exports, and the financial sector.
Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS