New York – Rep. Eliot L. Engel, the senior Democratic Member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, released the following statement regarding the protests in Ukraine.
"I am very disturbed by recent developments in Ukraine. Last week, Ukraine's leaders suspended European Union Association Agreement negotiations, turning their backs on a historic opportunity to integrate with Europe. And over the weekend, as tens of thousands of Ukrainians came out to peacefully show their support for a European future, riot police violently dispersed some demonstrators. Violence against peaceful protestors is unacceptable, and it is imperative that Ukraine’s authorities respect and uphold fundamental rights, including freedom of speech and assembly. At the same time, I urge protestors to avoid confrontations and all Ukrainians to continue to show restraint. I continue to believe that Ukraine's leaders need to put the interests of their people first and commit firmly to a European path, one which will ensure a more democratic and prosperous future for Ukraine."