House Foreign Aid Bill Passes Second Hurdle

Armenia/Azerbaijan US military aid parity maintained; bill Allocates $65 million in economic assistance for Armenia; $5 million for Mountainous Karabagh

WASHINGTON–DC–The House Appropriations Committee on Friday voted on the Fiscal Year 2005 foreign aid bill–affirming an earlier decision by the Foreign Operations Subcommittee to maintain parity in US foreign military financing (FMF) assistance to Armenia and Azerbaijan–reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

The committee–chaired by Florida Republican Bill Young–agreed to allocate $5 million in military financing assistance to Armenia and Azerbaijan–respectively–as opposed to President Bush’s earlier request of $8 million for Azerbaijan and $2 million for Armenia. The committee also supported an earmark of $65 million in US assistance to Armenia–and $5 million for Mountainous Karabagh. By contrast–the Bush Administration had requested $62 million for Armenia and had not specified any funding level for Mountainous Karabagh. With the adoption of this measure by the Appropriations Committee–the foreign aid bill will move to the full House for a vote. The Senate version of the bill will follow a similar path.

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