Statement from Senator Barack Obama in Response to President Bush's Announcement
"I welcome President Bush's decision to send aid to the people of Georgia, and Americans stand united in support of the men and women who will carry out this humanitarian mission. As soon as possible, we must follow this aid with broader reconstruction assistance, including emergency economic loans, to help the people of Georgia rebuild their lives and their economy.
The situation is still unstable, and Russia must back up its commitment to stop its violence and violation of Georgia's sovereignty with
actions - not just words. The United States should now join our European partners in direct, high-level diplomacy with both Georgia and Russia to seek immediate implementation of a cease-fire, and to achieve a lasting resolution to this crisis. There must be independent monitors to verify the implementation of this cease-fire, and Russia must not use this moment to consolidate a position that violates Georgia's territorial integrity, or to violate the human rights of the people of Georgia.
As we move forward, the United States and Europe must review our multilateral and bilateral arrangements with Russia in light of its actions. The loss of life over the last few days has been tragic, and there are no winners in this conflict. Now we must rededicate ourselves to achieving a lasting peace in the region."