Transcript for President Obama: Sanctions to 'Impose a Cost' on Russia
This is an ABC news special report. Crisis in Ukraine. This is an ABC news special report let's listen in on the president speaking on the Ukraine. Sovereignty and territorial. Integrity of -- War was good afternoon or right. Report Jerry 600 questions I want to provide a brief update on our efforts to address the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. Since the Russian intervention. We've been mobilizing the international community to condemn. This violation of international law and to support the people and government of Ukraine. This morning I signed an executive order that authorizes sanctions on individuals and entities responsible for violating. The sovereignty and territorial. Integrity of Ukraine. Or for stealing the assets of the Ukrainian people. According to -- guidance the State Department has also put in place restrictions on the travel certain individuals and officials. These decisions. Continue our efforts to impose a cost on rush and those responsible for the situation Crimea. And they also give us the flexibility to adjust our response -- forward based on Russia's actions. We took these steps -- close coordination with our European -- -- spoken to several of our closest friends around the world and I'm pleased that -- In a national unity is on display at this important moment. Already we've moved together to announce substantial assistance for the government in -- And today in Brussels our allies took similar steps to impose costs on Russian. I am confident that we are moving forward together. United in our determination to oppose actions that violate international law and to support the government and people of Ukraine. And that includes standing up for the principle of state sovereignty. The proposed. Referendum on the future -- would violate the Ukrainian constitution. And violate international law. Any discussion about the future Ukraine must include the legitimate government of Ukraine. In 2014 we are well beyond the days -- borders can be -- drawn over the heads of democratic leaders. While we. Taking steps want to be clear that there's also a way to resolve this crisis that respects the interests of the Russian Federation. As well with the Ukrainian people. Let international monitors its all of -- -- Including Crimea to ensure the rights of all ukrainians are being respected including. Ethnic Russians. Begin consultations between the government of Russia and Ukraine with the participation. Of the international community. Russia would maintain its basing rights in Crimea provided that it abides by its agreements and respects. Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. And the world should support the people of Ukraine as they move to elections in May. That's the path of the escalation. And sector -- engaged in discussions -- all of the relevant parties including Russia and Ukraine to pursue that path. But. If this violation of international law continues. The -- of the United States and our allies and the international community will remain firm. Meanwhile we've taken steps to reaffirm our commitment to the security and democracy of our allies in Eastern Europe and to support the people -- -- One last point there's been a lot of talk in congress about these issues. Today once again I'm calling on congress to follow up on these words -- action. Specifically to support the IMF's capacity to land resources to you for -- And to provide American assistance for the Ukrainian government so that they can weather this storm and stabilize their economy. Make needed reforms to deliver for the people all of which will provide a smoother pathway for. The elections the -- been scheduled. In -- Today the world concede that the United States is united whether -- allies and partners in the Fulton international law. And pursuing a just outcome that advances global security and the future of -- through Ukrainian people deserve. That's what we're gonna continue to do in the days to come until. We have seen a resolution. This crisis thanks very much. That was President Obama announcing sanctions against Russia I want to bring in now Terry Moran who joins us by phone from the capital of Crimea. And -- one of the things that we heard from President Obama in that speech is that he wants to see international monitors let in not only to the Ukraine. But into Crimea where you are right now. That's right and -- international monitors tried to cross the border from. The restaurant Ukraine and were blocked by armed men you Crimea is now in control. Of the -- and -- -- there -- millions of supporters here most people in Crimea are ethnic Russians are Russian nationals. And -- support. The presence of Russian troops it sounds -- they have a President Obama is trying to do is -- who do indeed. -- -- here like it's been done. The Russian during -- -- Terry do you get any sense that -- undoing of that -- might be successful from what you've been seeing and hearing in the streets. When -- out of this street increasingly. -- -- -- Russian community here which is probably a majority certainly the pro Russian candidate for president the last time. Won an overwhelming number of the votes here in Crimea. Bet that Russian majority is getting. More and more vocal more and more -- And the notion that day that President Obama would be able. -- find a way to pull them back -- Ukraine's. There's a lot of diplomacy that needs to be done before that's going to be done peacefully tensions are rising here no question about it. Our chief foreign correspondent Terry Moran joining us from Crimea thank you Terry and there will be more of this continuing coverage on abcnews.com. And more tonight. On world news with Diane Sawyer we return you now -- your regularly scheduled programming. This has been a special. From ABC.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.