WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressional Ukraine Caucus Co-Chairs, Reps. Andy Harris (R-MD), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), and Sander Levin (D-MI), today issued the following statement in response to reported comments by Secretary of State Tillerson on Ukraine:

“We are deeply concerned with the reported question asked by Secretary of State Tillerson ‘Why should U.S. taxpayers be interested in Ukraine?’ It is abundantly clear that the U.S. has a major security interest in a free and democratic Ukraine, one not subject to Russian aggression. The statement by a State Department spokesman that the Secretary’s statement was a ‘rhetorical device’ only adds to the uncertainties about what the basic policies are of the current administration. The Secretary’s statement also seems contradictory to his earlier statements in support of sanctions against Russia. It is imperative that the United States stands shoulder to shoulder with the people of Ukraine, who have demonstrated time and again their shared values for sovereignty, human rights, and the rule of law.”