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tv   U.N. Security Council Meeting on Ukraine- Russia Conflict  CSPAN  November 29, 2018 11:24pm-12:03am EST

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gatherings, including the wedding of pat and richard nixon. >> in may of 1903, three or four months after the mission opened, president teddy roosevelt was here in southern california. and frank miller, the men who built the inn, invited him to come here and he spent the night in that room. at that time, it gave the epithet of the presidential suite, and is historically how it was known for many years. >> watch c-span cities tour's of riverside, california saturday at noon eastern on c-span twos book tv and sunday at 2:00 p.m. on american history tv on c-span3, working with our cable affiliates as we explore america. tomorrow, president trump will attend the g20 summit in argentina and have one-on-one meetings with leaders of japan, germany, and china.
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he also canceled a planned meeting with russian president vladimir putin. the un security council held an emergency meeting on the conflict between russia and the ukraine earlier in the week. this is 35 minutes. >> thank you, mr. president. less than a month ago, when i last briefed the security council on the situation in ukraine, i brought to the council's attention the reports of increased tensions in the sea of azov and underlying the need to avoid any risk of escalation, provocation, or miscalculation. regrettably, a serious security incident took place near crimea, close to the sea only yesterday. i wish to underline that the united nations currently cannot independently verify the circumstances surrounding the incident.
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however, reports indicate on 25 november, an incident involving three ukrainian vessels and at least one russian vessel took place near the straits when the former attempted to enter the sea of azov. a number of ukrainian sailors, though the exact number remains unclear, were reportedly injured in the event. ukraine claims that it had previously notified the russian federation of its intent to sail these vessels to the ukrainian port of mariupol in the sea, which requires entry through the narrow kerch straits. the russian federation, meanwhile, claims that ukraine has provoked the incident and that russia acted in accordance with international law. according to media reports, the ukrainian ships and their personnel are currently being held by the russian authorities. ukraine's national security and defense council has since recommended the declaration of martial law. we understand that the decision remains subject to ratification
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by the brihonda. mr. president, the waters of the sea of azov were claimed as being historically internal waters of both ukraine and the russian federation. where vessels of the two countries have enjoyed freedom of navigation. however, tensions have risen in and around these waters since the annexation of crimea in 2014, which has been the subject of several general assembly resolutions. in september, 2016, our withdraw proceedings under the united nations convention on the law of the sea were instituted by ukraine against the russian federation with regard to, a, and i quote, "dispute concerning coastal states' rights in the black sea, sea of azov, and kerch straight," end quote. the russian federation argues that the sea of azov and the
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kerch strait is not subject to the tribunal. mr. president, the united nations is deeply concerned about this escalation of tensions which is taking place in the broader context of the conflict in eastern ukraine and the annexation of crimea. in our last briefing to the security council, we urged all parties to avoid any unilateral steps that could deepen the divide or depart from the spirit and letter of the minsk agreements. in that context, i wish to reiterate that the u.n. fully supports the lead role of the normandy four, the trilateral contact group, the osce and other key actors to find a peaceful settlement. i also wish to reiterate our call for renewed and constructive action by all concerned to overcome the apparent impasse in diplomatic negotiations. the u.n. underlines the need to fully respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of ukraine within its internationally recognized
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borders in accordance with relevant general assembly and security council resolutions. regrettably, yesterday's incident only threatens to cause the situation in and around ukraine to deteriorate further. we strongly urge both the russian federation and ukraine to refrain from any ratcheting up of actions or rhetoric and remind both of the need to contain this incident so as to prevent a serious escalation that may have unforeseen consequences. at this juncture, the immediate de-escalation of tensions in the sea of azov and black sea is required. it is critical that earnest attempts are made to find a peaceful settlement to the situation based on the diplomatic and legal means available and in accordance with the u.n. charter. thank you, mr. president. >> thank you, mr. president. this morning, i spoke with
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president trump and secretary pompeo and my statement reflects the concerns at the highest level of the american government. for the past four years, the international community has spoken with a strong, clear, and largely united voice denouncing russia's aggression against ukraine. the united states, the european union, and its member states and many other countries, have imposed sanctions against russia for its unacceptable conduct in crimea and eastern ukraine. sunday's outrageous violation of sovereign ukrainian territory is part of a pattern of russian behavior that includes the purported annexation of crimea and abuses against countless ukrainians in crimea. as well as stoking conflict that has taken the lives of more than 10,000 people in eastern ukraine. and it shows no sign of decreasing. what we witnessed this weekend is yet another reckless russian
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escalation. let's be clear about what is known. ukrainian ships set sail from one ukrainian port to another ukrainian port. they attempted to do so by the only possible way to go, through the kerch strait. both russia and ukraine used the strait routinely. but this time, russia decided to prevent passage of the ukrainian ships, rammed them, and opened fire on them. this is no way for a law-abiding civilized nation to act. impeding ukraine's lawful transit through the kerch strait is a violation under international law. it is an arrogant act that the international community must condemn and will never accept. in may, the united states condemned russia's construction and opening of the kerch strait bridge between russia and
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occupied crimea. in august, the united states condemned russia's harassment of international shipping in the sea of azov and the kerch strait. the united states will continue to stand with the people of ukraine against the russian aggression. it is our expectation that our european partners will lead this effort through the normandy four format, which we support. we call on russia to respect its international obligations and not obstruct or harass ukraine's transit in the kerch strait and to de-escalate the tensions it has created. as president trump said many times, the united states would welcome a normal relationship with russia. but outlaw actions like this one continue to make that impossible. the united states will maintain
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its crimea-related sanctions against russia. further escalation of this kind will only make matters worse. it will further undermine russia's standing in the world. it will further sour russia's relations with the u.s. and many other countries. it will further increase tensions with ukraine. in the name of international peace and security, russia must immediately cease its unlawful conduct and respect the navigational rights and freedoms of all states. thank you. >> thank you very much, mr. president. mr. president, before coming here, i did what some of us normally do every morning. i searched through internet to find out what happened this day in history. and look what i found. exactly on this day, november 26, in 1939, the soviet army orchestrated an incident by shelling a village near the soviet-finish border.
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then the soviets claimed it was done by the finish side and use it as a pretext for the invasion on november 30. that's how the so-called winter war started, which eventually led to the expulsion of the soviet union from the league of nations. interesting, isn't it? that is so to say about the unlearned lessons. [speaking ukranian] mr. president, we have the convening of this briefing at the request of ukraine. i would like to sincerely thank the members of the security council for their unwavering support of my country. demonstrated once again today. and of course, thank you for your very useful update. we're convinced that it is of utmost importance to discuss the recent developments near the
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kerch strait since they constitute a clear threat to international peace and security. before delivering on the subject, i would like for us to express my dismay at the attempt of the russian federation to manipulate the agenda of the security council, and to have a meeting convened on the deceiving relation of the borders of the russian federation. in this regard, i have to emphasize that according to the international law, crimea and respective territorial waters are the ukrainian territory. temporarily occupied by the russian federation. hence, there are no russian borders in the area where the incident happened. i repeat, there are no state russian borders around the crimean peninsula. dear colleagues, you have already heard the russian interpretation of the events which, as usual, is concocted to mix reality with fiction with an ultimate goal of misinforming,
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misleading, and confusing the listener. instead of real details, of yesterday's incident, we heard epic stories about the apocalypse in ukraine. the russian claims violation of the russian border by the ukrainian naval ships is an outright lie. it shifts all responsibility on the ukrainian side, consciously manipulating the facts and ignoring the evidence. mr. president, for the better understanding of the situation by all council members, i would like to present the main facts of what happened during the last three days. first of all, in accordance with the united nations convention on the law of the sea and article 2 of the treaty between the ukraine and russian federation in cooperation in the use of the
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sea and kerch strait, the ukrainian navy enjoys full freedom of navigation in the kerch strait and therefore can pass-through the kerch strait at any time. on 23 november, the ukrainian navy boat group, slow armored boats, and a tugboat, started to plan transfer from the port of odessa in the black sea to the port of mariupol in the azov sea. the route and procedure of this passage were the same as in september this year when two ukrainian naval vessels sailed from odessa to mariupol. on 24 november during the naval march, the commander of the ukrainian naval group received a notice from the russian authorities concerning the closure of navigation in the kerch strait area. however, the international center for navigation control located in spain did not confirm
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this notification. on 25 november, the ukrainian commander requested twice the russian maritime control services the passage through kerch strait. he did not receive any answer. later, the russian maritime control officer directed the ukrainian navy boat group to the so-called area of waiting. it was stated that ukrainian vessels would be soon informed on the kerch strait passage procedure. and then all hell broke loose. approximately at 8:39 a.m., a russian coast guard ship made a ram attack against the tugboat and damaged it. the video of this attack is available online. if you watch it, you will clearly see that the ukrainian boat was trying to avoid the collision while the russian ship was deliberately carrying out the attack.
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i also have to warn you that if you happen to understand the russian language, you will hear lots of profanities from the russian sailors in that short clip. after the ramming, the russian vessels blocked the ukrainian vessels from rendering assistance to the damaged vessels. all this time, the russian vessels were trying to provoke ukrainian seamen to open fire. at 1:22 p.m., two russian k-52 alligator attack helicopters approached the ukrainian cutters at the height of 50 meters. they openly demonstrated their missile armaments and the laser aiming device. after completing the dangerous maneuvering, the helicopters departed towards the crimean peninsula. from 1:40 p.m., russia has physically blocked the passage beneath the so-called kerch bridge, having located there a
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tanker and later, a cargo ship. after 7:00 p.m., due to the impossibility to pass the strait, the ukrainian navy ships headed back to exit the kerch strait. i repeat, they headed back, away from the strait and towards the open sea. they were immediately followed by a group of about 10 coast guard and russian black sea fleet vessels. there are audio recordings of communications among the russian vessel commanders regarding the orders on how to proceed. these recordings clearly demonstrate that the russian military vessels were given orders to attack the ukrainian vessels after the latter started to withdraw from the area. approximately at 8:30 p.m., the russian side carried out the shoot to kill order. i have all this recorded in my
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telephone, but i will not waste your time, of course. i will just go over a couple of changes which were intercepted. there is a conversation between the base in kerch and the russian boat. "hands up, hands up. everyone on board, hands up. surround your arms. we'll shoot to kill." and then finally, "well, who was getting the shooting?" "i cannot connect with izanbrut, there is a commotion in the air. they are shouting, the ukrainians are sinking. what is going on there? i don't understand."
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and then the commander from kerch is asking, "who gave the order to shoot to kill?" and the captain replies, "it was me." according to your previous orders. so the vessels, ukrainian vessels, were damaged. after the ukrainian vessels were forced to stop and they were seized by the russian forces. six ukrainian seamen are wounded, three of them seriously. and according to the previous information, one is in a critical situation. so once again, the video of ramming and shooting, as well as relevant audio recordings, have been already posted online and everybody can consult them to see what happened and how it happened. distinguished members of the council, throughout all these
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events, the ukrainian side acted strictly in line with international law and the existing bilateral agreement with the russian federation. ukraine's right to cross the kerch strait is guaranteed by paragraph one of article 2 of the treaty between ukraine and russia in cooperation and the use of the sea and the strait from 2003. the treaty clearly provides for the freedom of navigation for both civil and military vessels of ukraine and russia in the sea of azov and the kerch strait. this is the treaty. that was signed that the current russian government. [speaking in a foreign language] secondly, the russian federation was duly and well in advance
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informed through traditional channels of communication about passing the ukrainian navy group through the kerch strait. thirdly, the ukrainian group strictly followed the orders of the traffic control service. as you can see, there were no provocations whatsoever from ukraine's part. nevertheless, the russian federation opted to purposefully block the passage of the ukrainian ships, thus violating the freedom of navigation guaranteed by the ukraine-russia cooperation agreement with the sea of azov and kerch strait. moreover, russia committed an act of open aggression by ukraine by targeting, firing on, and capturing three military vessels. i would like to remind everyone that article 3 of the general assembly resolution 3314 qualifies as an act of aggression and i quote, "an attack by the armed forces of a state on land, sea, or air forces, or air fleets of another
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state," end of quote. russia's recent belligerent act constitutes yet another violation of international law, including the u.n. charter, the united nations convention law of the sea, as well as existing bilateral agreements. this is a conscious provocation aimed at aggravation of the security situation in the region with the aim to establish its full control over the sea of azov and the kerch strait. there is irrefutable evidence that the recent russian aggressive actions were planned and authorized by the top russian military leadership. mr. president, the restrained actions of the ukraine clearly demonstrates that we're committed to solve the current situation by peaceful means and
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in full compliance with international law and existing bilateral obligations. nevertheless, further escalation of the situation by the russian federation should not be ruled out. according to available intelligence data, there is a clear threat for invasion and seizing of mariupol and gdansk. further acts and provocations by the border guard service and russian navy remains a possibility. due to these threats, yesterday the president of ukraine supported the initiative of the national security and defense council to propose to the parliament of ukraine to declare the martial law for 60 days, but cut it short to 30 to avoid unnecessary speculations. this martial law can be lifted any time. it has no negative effect on the respect for human rights and the functioning of democratic institutions. in response to the russian delegation's scare stories about alleged motives of ukraine's
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president, regarding the martial law, i will just quote the president's statement available online, statement he made just a couple minutes ago. "the martial law will last 30 days and will be over in the middle of december. in early december, i will submit a decision of the parliament regarding the date of the presidential elections which, according to the constitution, are to be held on 31st march 2019. full stop." ukraine is ready to settle the situation through political and diplomatic means. at the same time, we're ready to use all available means in exercising our right to self-defense as foreseen by article 51 of the u.n. charter. mr. president, the kremlin's
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criminal regime has once again demonstrated that it won't stop its aggressive policy and is ready for any acts of aggression against the ukrainian state. the dramatic escalation of the situation in the region needs a prompt reaction from international community. these events are yet another testament to the relevance of the united nations general assembly draft resolution prepared by ukraine and the group of like-minded states regarding the issue of militarization of crimea and black and azov seas. once again, we're grateful for today's strong statements in support of ukraine. we call upon the russian federation to guarantee the freedom of navigation in the region while condemning the russian acts of aggression in the black sea and the sea of azov. ukraine demands russia to immediately release 23 captured ukrainian soldiers and all three ukrainian ships.
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also, call on the international community to implement a new set of sanctions aimed at addressing the situation in the region, including against the russia's azov ports. the increased political pressure on moscow would contribute to the de-escalation of the security situation on the sea and on blocking the free crossing of the kerch canal. if unopposed, kremlin regime will take another and another aggressive act, creating even wider conflict in the region. i thank you, mr. president. >> as a representative of the russian federation has asked for the floor. >> thank you, mr. president. i've heard a lot of very interesting things today and i would just like to share our views of what has been said. although, of course, it does not warrant being talked about. much has been predictable.
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first of all, i would like to say once again we have been justified in our proposal to hold a meeting under another item agenda was absolutely right because today, people have been talking about whatever they wanted. annex, occupation, aggression, and once again, apparently we also have annexed and occupied the sea of azov. that's something new to us. we didn't know about that. but the main topic here is something not many people have talked about, apart from yurich, who predictably talked about some instances i'll come back to. so, why did the ukrainians feel that they were able to use that area, but moved to an act of provocation and subjected their own sailors to a risk of their life? and nobody's managed to answer that question.
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nobody even referred to that. so that could be perceived by as being carte blanche for ukraine to carry out acts of aggression and to pose a threat to the entire region. and given what the ukrainian representative said, that is exactly what ukraine thinks. i'd just like to correct what some speakers said, what was said by ms. di carlo. it was a bit odd. she seemed to mix up the crimea and minsk agreements. i do hope you have read the minsk agreements. i'm sure you are aware no mention is made there of crimea. you also urged the sovereignty to be respected. surely, the sovereignty of the russian federation should be respected, too. at least that is our understanding of what you believe. ms. haley also touched upon the fact that crimea is part of the minsk agreement, too. and, ms. haley, perhaps it seems
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that you're saying now that the sea of azov is part of the agreements, too. perhaps i just misheard. unfortunately, that is really astounding. in a previous meeting, our permanent representative, talked about an entire -- he gave an entire analysis of the minsk agreement. he went through it really paragraph by paragraph, and despite that, we have to hear these egregious things. of course the investigation is underway and we will show the outcome of that, but i don't want to predict what is still a hot topic. but i wanted to highlight two points that have not been mentioned, but clearly they pertain to this. first of all, there were two sovereign from that ukrainian social services, and they had a
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mission to act in a certain way. and there's another small detail, but an important one. -- was part of russian territory. a, if we're talking about crimea rather. they came up from the south, so this was a gross act of provocation. there's just no other qualification. nonetheless, you're not prepared to recognize that as an act of provocation. furthermore, it should be pointed out that your actions earlier by supporting ukraine's version of what happened is already leading to an exacerbation of the situation in the east of ukraine. i see colleagues have told us the confrontation line has been
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shelling, etc., in that area. the capital had shelling and military servicemen have been moved around to patrol. and a town has been captured, as well. so, these are specific events. they violate clearly the minsk agreements. and all the rest, a lot of what has been said here today, has nothing to do with this. and you're just completely ignoring these facts. i'd also like to say, that since crimea has been touched upon, although crimea is not on the security council's agenda, i would like to underscore that if you know who crimea belongs to, for us, the cremeans, it is not a question anymore whether you
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like it or not. no sanctions will change our opinion. that issue was closed after the crimeans voted in a free election and referendum to become part of russia. that was a referendum on self-determination. many people are asking, well, did they know what would face them given the current geopolitical anti-russian project in ukraine? of course, people have no illusions. they knew what would happen. does russia regret what has happened? no, in no way shape or form. furthermore, i'd like to say the majority of russians are proud of what has happened because we have sought to protect crimea. if we had not done so, then they would be subjected to what other people are being subjected to at the moment.
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these are russian-speaking people who protected the area from the fascists. there's also a need to mention, and i didn't mention this in my previous statement regarding the proper topic, that the decision taken by ukraine has really given free rein to the nationalists in ukraine. nobody mentioned the fact that there was another attack on the russian embassy in kiev. ukrainian authorities did nothing. and a car was set on fire earlier. the radicals threatening to storm the permanent representation. and there's no reaction coming from you. that just seems to be normal in your opinion, it would seem. we are urging the ukrainian party ensures complete protection be given to the russian permanent representation in line with relations in that agreement.
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mr. president, since you represent china, i'd like to remind you of something that was said by confucius. namely, "it is very difficult to find a black cat in a dark room, in particular if the black cat is not in the room." therefore, ladies and gentlemen, this is precisely what you're doing. you're condemning a russian act of aggression, but you're not talking about the reason for why we actually met today in this meeting. the problem in front of you is easy to solve. you can just solve the problem over a 10-minute period. you need the team from washington. but unfortunately, given what our ukrainian colleague said in his statement, i can understand that they are intending to carry on in the way that they have been acting.
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you been talking about how fantastical we've been doing. that needs to stop. i would like to say that what you have has been doing in coordination with the u.s. and others to promote a conflict line against russian -- russia makes for very dangerous consequences. we are going to curb any infringement on russian sovereignty and integrity in putting the sea of azov and that area. we do hope that that is clear to everyone. thank you. >> thank you, mr. president. i will be very brief. because i think i was clear enough in my previous statement and it needs no further explanations. i would just say that starting from spring, 2014, we hear a lot of russian stories about "crimea is ours."
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"we are not there." i think everyone, at least in this building, is fully fed up with all these stories. my short remark is just specifically for him, that the kerch strait can be approached only from the south because the azov sea is located to the north of the black sea. and when you said that the ukrainian ships were cynically -- moving to the north, trying to enter the kerch strait, what did you mean? i didn't understand. they were attacked by the russian's navy while they were moving from the kerch canal to the south.
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i thank you, mr. president. journal,'s washington live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. up friday morning, the latest development in special counsel robert mueller's russia probe with george washington law professor jonathan turley. democratic congressman brian higgins from new york talks about democratic leadership and the future of the party. be sure to watch c-span's "washington journal" live at 7:00 eastern sunday morning. join the discussion. up this weekend on book tv, sunday at 7:30 p.m. eastern, senator bernie sanders talks about his book "where we go from here, two years in the resistance." >> you can watch television from morning to night for years, that question will not come up.
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is it appropriate that the top 1/10 of 1% owns more wealth than the bottom 90%? that in theriate wealthiest country in the history of the world, a we have the highest rate of childhood poverty of almost any other major country on earth? are we concerned a handful of media conglomerates control what we see, hear, and read? >> on sunday at 9:00 p.m. eastern on "afterwards," national review executive editor discusses his book "melting pot or civil war the son of immigrants makes the case against open borders." he's interviewed by the former commissioner of u.s. immigration and naturalization service. >> when you think about the next several decades, partly because of falling birth rates among nativeborn americans, immigration is a big driver. a composition of immigration is
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important not as a discrete matter of immigration policy, but in terms of human capital policy. it really is a very important issue touching on many different sectors. >> watch this weekend, on c-span twos book tv. outgoing house speaker paul ryan sat down for an interview with washington post reporter paul came. he discussed his political career and his decision to retire. this is 40 minutes. mr. kane: good morning, everyone. fred gave an amazing introduction as always. i will add a few other things for data details. paul ryan is the 54th speaker of the house, led the house for more than three years. and in a couple of weeks he'll step down.


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