Obama Requests $40 Million in Aid to Armenia

White House Requests a 33% Increase over its FY10 Proposal; Maintains Foreign Military Financing Parity to Armenia and Azerbaijan

Representatives Pallone, Schiff, Eshoo, Speier, and Lowey Played Key Role in Educating Administration about Vital Need for Increased Aid to Armenia


WASHINGTON–President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2011 (FY11) budget, released earlier Monday, calls for $40 million in assistance to Armenia — $10 million more than his FY10 request, but still $1 million less than the total appropriated by Congress last year, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

The figure, while representing a substantial increase over the President’s last request, falls just short of the $41 million actually appropriated last year by Congress, and far short of the $70 million request that was made last year by the Armenian Caucus and broadly supported by Armenian American advocacy organizations.

The President’s budget proposes maintaining Foreign Military Financing (FMF) assistance parity between Armenia and Azerbaijan, requesting $3.5 million for each country.  In past years, the White House has sought to tilt the military aid balance in support of Baku, only to have its efforts rejected by Congress, which has consistently ensured balanced FMF figures for the two nations.  The Administration did not extend the parity principle to International Military Training, Education, and Training (IMET), instead seeking to provide twice as much for Azerbaijan ($900,000) than Armenia ($450,000) in this area.

The President requested $22.12 million in assistance to Azerbaijan, $120,000 more than appropriated by Congress last year.  The President’s overall assistance request for Europe and Eurasia is $599,164,000, which represents a reduction of $11,818,000 from the previous year.

“We welcome the decision by the Obama Administration to ask for $10 million more in economic aid to Armenia this year than he did last year, and also his proposal to maintain parity in a key area of military aid to Armenia and Azerbaijan,” said Aram Hamparian, Executive Director of the ANCA. “We want to offer our special thanks to Representatives Frank Pallone, Adam Schiff, Anna Eshoo, and Jackie Speier – and, of course, Nita Lowey – for their energetic efforts in sharing with the Administration how increased aid and support for Armenia advances both U.S. interests and American values in a strategically important area of the world.  We look forward, as well, to working with all our Congressional friends in building on these numbers and securing the adoption of increased aid levels and constructive policy provisions that will contribute to the strengthening of the U.S.-Armenia relationship and the search for a fair and lasting peace in the region.”

The proposed assistance to Armenia is a significant improvement over the FY10 request, which called for a 38% cut in aid to Armenia, a 20% increase in aid to Azerbaijan, and the abandonment of the longstanding Armenia-Azerbaijan military aid parity agreement in favor of Baku.  The ANCA led the Armenian American community in expressing its concerns to the Administration last year, and working with the Congressional Armenian Caucus and members of the Senate and House Foreign Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign operations to increase the figures.

The Foreign Operations Subcommittees of the House and Senate Appropriation Committees will now review the President’s budget and each draft their own versions of the FY11 foreign assistance bill.

Authors

Related posts

Discussion Policy

Comments are welcomed and encouraged. Though you are fully responsible for the content you post, comments that include profanity, personal attacks or other inappropriate material will not be permitted. Asbarez reserves the right to block users who violate any of our posting standards and policies.

9 Comments

  1. Realist said:

    It’s a good start but still far from a reasonable amount for such a strategically located country like Armenia. If the SD really want us out of the bear’s claw they will have to do much better than a measly 33% increase.
    Great work  Pallone, Schiff, Eshoo, Speier, and Lowey but chump change just aint gonna cut it anymore folks.

  2. Berge Jololian said:

    Too little and way too late;   Obama and his administration should keep the pocket change he proposes for Armenia and lift off US State Department diplomatic pressure, arm twisting, and acknowledge the Armenian genocide.
    Now that Georgia is deemed unsafe and unreliable as a gateway to Central Asian gas & oil; Armenia’s geo-strategic importance for US Policy’s to penetrate the  Caucasus and guarantee an access route to the gas & oil fields is worth billions.
    $40 million pales in comparison to the billions of US aid and investments in Georgia.

  3. RAYMOND said:

    Yup you got it Armen!
    The US is given these funds by foreign interests as blood money for denying the Armenian Genocide. The US then gives Armenia these funds as bribe money to silence us in America and essentially cover up their denial of a crime off the coattails of a foreign interest.
    And so the vicious cycle of hypocrisy and lies continues to the detriment of man’s inhumanity to man.

  4. Nairian said:

    The US has been aligning themselves with denialist Turkey for so long (95 years).  Not $40 M not $400 Billion is not enough.  The US and Europe owe us much much more than that.  They were all “guilty by association” with the criminal Turkey, and the U.S., Britain and Germany are continuing to be “guilty by association” siding with Turkey, who denies the Armenian Genocide and continues to deny it and the US, Britain and Germany continue to support them until today, by not accepting the mere fact that indeed a Genocide by Turkey did happen to the helpless 1.5 Million Armenian civilians.

    To make matters worse, the US arm-twisted our little newly formed landlocked little Armenia with only 3 million population to sign such harmful “protocols” to further deny the Arm. Genocide, to forever have Turkey to sit on our stolen lands and give away Artsakh that their brave men of arms lost their sweet life for just a little while ago.  YES INDEED THE U.S.A. OWES US BLOOD MONEY!!!!!

  5. Nairian said:

    To make matters worse, the US arm-twisted our little newly formed landlocked little Armenia with only 3 million population to sign such harmful “protocols” to further deny the Arm. Genocide, to forever have Turkey sit on their stolen lands and give away Artsakh that our brave men of arms lost their sweet life for just a little while ago.  YES INDEED U.S.A. OWES US BLOOD MONEY!!!!

  6. Pingback: Obama Requests $40 Million in Aid to Armenia | Asbarez Armenian News | armeniatoday

  7. Berj said:

    Folks, I would like to suggest that in writing please reference the “US State Department” – the equivalent of Foreign Ministry in other countries.  Not the US (not the country).  There is a difference!  – God Bless America and Armenia :)

  8. Pingback: Tweets that mention Obama Requests $40 Million in Aid to Armenia | Asbarez Armenian News -- Topsy.com

*

Top