Sen. Reed Secures Safeguards Against Azerbaijan’s Use of Satellite For Warfare

Senator Jack Reed (D-RI)

Export-Import Bank confirms to Senator that Azerbaijan will be required to submit annual report and allow inspections of records
 
WASHINGTON—Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, has secured a series of written assurances and ongoing reporting requirements regarding a controversial loan recently extended by the U.S. Export-Import Bank to Azerbaijan for the purchase of an advanced satellite, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.
 
The bipartisan Congressional inquiries into this deal, since it was first placed on the Ex-Im agenda earlier this year, were made possible by Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA), whose detailed scrutiny into this transaction created the opportunity for both his House and Senate colleagues to follow up with a broad range of questions and concerns.  In addition to Senator Reed, Senator Mark Kirk (D-IL), a leading voice in Congress on military issues, played an especially constructive role in addressing the potential regional security implications of this satellite financing deal.
 
In a detailed, two-page letter, the Bank’s Chairman and President, Fred P. Hochberg, explained to Senator Reed that, “[T]hough Ex-Im Bank has established that the satellite lacks a military capacity, the Bank has implemented additional measures to ensure that the satellite is not utilized for any military related purpose.” 
 
— “The Ex-Im bank loan documentation will include a provision prohibiting the Government of Azerbaijan from entering any agreement allowing for the use of the satellite by any of the armed forces of Azerbaijan, or the armed forces of any other country.”
 
— “Ex-Im Bank will also have the right to inspect all books and records related to the project at any time during the life of the loan.”
 
— “Lastly, the Government of Azerbaijan will be contractually required to furnish monitoring reports to Ex-Im Bank on an annual basis. The monitoring reports will identify all parties that have contracted to lease transponder capacity and will include certifications by the Government of Azerbaijan that the satellite has not been leased, nor has the Government of Azerbaijan entered into any agreements, with any of the armed forces of Azerbaijan, or the armed forces of any other country to permit utilization of the satellite.”
 
“We want to thank Senator Reed, Congressman Sherman, and the other legislators who worked with the Export-Import Bank in seeking to address deeply held concerns, raised by Armenian Americans and others devoted to peace in the Caucasus, regarding any U.S. action that might empower or embolden Azerbaijan to renew its aggression against Nagorno Karabakh and Armenia,” said ANCA Executive Director Aram Hamparian.  “While we remain opposed to this deal and to any other potentially harmful assistance to the increasingly belligerent Azerbiajani government of Ilham Aliyev, we do value the Bank’s sensitivities to its regional security implications, and appreciate the efforts of legislators to build meaningful safeguards, prohibitions, and reporting requirements into this transaction.”
 
On April 27th, the U.S. Export-Import Bank voted to approve the controversial deal to finance Azerbaijan’s purchase of an advanced satellite just weeks after Azerbaijan threatened to shoot down a civilian airliner. The decision came despite serious Congressional reservations and strong opposition by the Armenian American community to U.S. actions that will strengthen Azerbaijan’s military capabilities at a time of increasing threats and acts of aggression by Baku against both Armenia and Nagorno Karabakh.
 
Over the past three months, the ANCA has conveyed the Armenian American community’s serious legal, technical and political opposition to this transaction in a series of letters and meetings with senior officials of the Export-Import Bank and the State Department. The firm selling this satellite, known as Azerspace/Africasat-1A, is Orbital Sciences Corporation of Dulles, Virginia. It is being purchased by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technologies of Azerbaijan in Baku, Azerbaijan. The application for Ex-Im financing was made by BNP-Parabis of New York City, and the loan is being guaranteed by Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Finance.

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12 Comments

  1. kaloust said:

    This so called “safeguard” looks very short sited and should not be celebrated for a very simple reason. It says: “Ex-Im Bank will also have the right to inspect all books and records related to the project at any time during the life of the loan.” What… during the life of the loan? I wonder, what happens after the loan is paid in full? it’s… ridiculously short sited.

  2. Mego said:

    Thank you Mr.Reed, and Mr. Fred Hochberg,now we feel safe, knowing that Mrs. Alliyev well use the satellite only to check on her Real-estates, and Bank- accounts world wide, thank you again for keeping Mr. Alliyev’s hands off.

  3. Khatch said:

    Assurances by senators are not enough, this deal and the likes must be stopped!
    Banks must stop ripping off the American public and must stop making deals with Monsters.

  4. fact said:

    Come on .. as if in reality there were any clear line between use of a Satellite for military purpose and civil one ! Imagine as the honorable senator would make sure that Azerbaijani general would not use any kind of mobile phone during battle field or war .. and if Azerbaijani would not us the satellite for broadcasting racial motivated anti Armenian propaganda and hatred against Karabkh/Astskhi people as did NAZI regime during Jewish Holocausts

  5. Halo said:

    This reminds me of the destruction of Armenian monuments in Nakhichevan. The world acted like it cared and when all was said and done, they wanted to “inspect” the site, as if that would solve anything now.

    Destroy Azerbaijan before they destroy us, that’s all I have to say.

  6. Sarkis said:

    If I understand correctly, the security of the Armenian side will be safeguarded by auditing operation reports written by Azeris? Is that it? Are we supposed to be naive enough to believe this kind of story and be thankful to banks and legislators who are allowing this project to happen? Can the vendor of the satellite prove to us beyond any doubt, that the equipment has no vision capabilities?

  7. the truth said:

    “written assurances ?

    Simply laudable!

    well, Iran is ready to give as much as ” “written assurances” as needed.. where is the problem Mr Senator Jack ?

  8. kevo said:

    The Bank is insured and it will be a win win when that sucker nose dives on its way to orbit, hopefully into Baku

  9. Raffi said:

    Instead Senator Jack Reed, he should be called Senator Smart Alec

  10. Chisto said:

    What a joke, once the satellite is in azeri hands, what will stop them from using this satellite for military intelligence, when they curb their relationship with the US? Oh yeah, they will slap azerbaijan with a fine! Say, 1,000,000.00 azeri manats!

  11. Mabuballah said:

    So the right hand won’t know what the left is doing? Am I also to suppose that Israel and the West is making sure that Armenia has the equal or better of all the high-tech weaponry that they have been providing all this time to the Azerbaijani murderers? Poppycock!

  12. bigmoustache said:

    lets just shoot it down when its in orbit. they world can call it “star wars” and denounce our actions. i say f the world!!! the world ignored us during the genocide, we can only fend for ourselves. we should always expect the worst. and with the vengeance of 1915 in our hearts, we could fight off ANY army in the world. enough is enough

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