Russian Declaration Of War Could Drive Oil Prices Even Higher
Brent crude oil was lifted by uncertainty in Ukraine and the threat of a Russian invasion. The commodity traded at $110.78 at 7:40 GMT and may have the potential to surge even higher as the situation plays out.
Over the weekend, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced his right to invade Ukraine in order to protect Russians living there and Russian interests. The decision was taken by Ukraine's pro-western Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk as a declaration of war.
Following the news, both Brent and WTI surged on the possibility that the two nations could enter into a full blown war.
Putin's declaration was in direct violation of warnings issued by the US government which advised Russia against military action. On Monday, CNBC reported that President Barack Obama together with leaders from Britain, Germany and Poland are accusing Putin of violating international law and threatening global peace and security.
US Secretary of State John Kerry is planning to visit Kiev on Tuesday in show of support for the nation's sovereignty. Since Putin's decision, Kerry has threatened to isolate Russia economically by imposing strict sanctions and trade restrictions against the nation. However, the US may be alone in its efforts to punish Putin as the European Union is unlikely to impose the same types of sanctions.
European nations have close ties with Russia and depend on the nation for most of the EU's natural gas. EU leaders are set to meet on Monday to discuss the situation, but they are widely expected to call for mediation between Russia and Ukraine.
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