VILNIUS – Sanctions will not stop Russia's aggression in Ukraine, ex-Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite says, adding that only a war will do that.
"Sanctions will not stop Putin, whatever they are. They are needed, but without the exceptions we see right now with the disconnection from the SWIFT and the exclusion of the energy sector and banks that service it…" Grybauskaite posted on Facebook.
"Only a war can stop the war that has already begun. There is no need to pretend and try to calm your conscience by supplying Ukraine only with weapons and doing so too late. The people of Ukraine are now fighting the war for us," she added.
And those repeated statements that NATO cannot help Ukraine "already sound pathetic and show the West's cowardice".
"Despite learning fast, the West still does not understand that there is a European war in Ukraine. Either you take part in it and fight the aggressor, or you stand and watch him destroy Ukraine and its people, becoming an accomplice in war crimes. Yes. An accomplice," she wrote.
If Russian President Vladimir Putin is not stopped in Ukraine, "we will end up needing to fight in any case, but in our countries already".
"I am ashamed to hear NATO leaders and officials muttering that they "cannot engage in the conflict", but we could do so in Syria, Libya, Africa, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan? Today, Ukraine is fighting for the survival of its nation and the peace in Europe," the former Lithuanian president said. "Glory to Ukraine. Glory to its heroes, only to its heroes for now, because others are not yet visible on the horizon."
The Kremlin invaded Ukraine last week and started a war, sparking condemnation from across the world. Russia surrounded Ukraine's major cities but Ukrainian forces are fiercely resisting.
Western countries, including Lithuania, responded to the invasion with tough sanctions for Russia, and are providing comprehensive assistance, including military, to Ukraine.