Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R., N.H.) called Russian president Vladimir Putin’s op-ed published in the New York Times Wednesday night “the height of hypocrisy” for lecturing the United States on seeking a resolution in the United Nations on military action in Syria.
In an interview on Fox News, Ayotte also criticized Putin’s suggestion that the Assad regime was not in fact responsible for using chemical weapons but instead was the work of opposition forces to provoke foreign intervention:
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN: Senator, your thoughts on this op-ed by President Putin in the New York Times speaking directly to the American people around the President of the United States?
AYOTTE: Well, I have to say it’s the height of hypocrisy for Putin at this point to lecture the United States of America. What he says in the op-ed, Greta, is that we have the to go to the United Nations to seek basically a resolution to do anything in Syria. Let’s keep in mind who has blocked us every time we have sought a resolution in the United Nations? It’s been the Russians and Chinese, so I think it’s very hypocritical of him to say that. He also says in this op-ed that it’s not so much the Syrian government who has used the chemical weapons, but again he makes the claim that the opposition forces used the chemical weapons. That just does not stand up to the evidence here. I think, again, this really makes — for him to speak to the American people like this in such a hypocritical way, bear in mind today the French, the U.K. and our country went to the United Nations with a resolution. Putin said no, I’m not going to accept a resolution there, I don’t want to go to through the United Nations security council with regard to securing the chemical weapons in Syria. At this point, I’m incredibly skeptical with regard to Putin as well as Assad. I hope for the administration’s sake that they are able to get the Assad regime to give up its chemical weapons in some verifiable way, but, as you identified, I don’t know how we verify that they’ve done so.