Bipartisan Letter Backs $100 Million FY21 Aid Package for Artsakh and Armenia
WASHINGTON—In a strong showing of legislative support, 75 House members from 23 states sent a bipartisan Armenian Caucus letter Wednesday asking Chairwoman Nita Lowey (D-NY) and Ranking Member Hal Rogers (R-KY) of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Operations to fund de-mining and rehabilitation services in Artsakh and expand U.S. assistance to Armenia, reported the Armenian National Committee of America.
“Over twice as many U.S. Representatives signed this year’s letter – illustrating the energy and urgency of Congressional support for saving Artsakh aid in the face of ill-advised attempts by the Trump-Pence Administration to kill a life-saving, peace-promoting de-mining program,” said Aram Hamparian, Executive Director of the ANCA. “We thank Representatives Pallone, Speier, and Schiff and all their colleagues who co-signed this letter for advancing a targeted, forward-leaning aid package for Artsakh and Armenia that invests in peace and democracy.”
The letter, circulated for signatures by the Congressional Armenian Caucus, included the following budgetary requests:
- $1.5 million for Artsakh demining and robust funding for regional rehabilitation services for survivors of landmine injuries and individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities.
- $100 million for economic, governance, rule of law, and security assistance to Armenia through State Department and USAID accounts.
- That the State Department and USAID lift any official or unofficial restrictions on U.S. travel, communication, or contacts with Artsakh government officials.
- The suspension of U.S. military aid for Azerbaijan until it has been verified to have ceased all attacks against Armenia and Artsakh.
Joining Congressional Armenian Caucus Co-Chairs Frank Pallone (D-NJ) and Jackie Speier (D-CA), and Vice-Chair Adam Schiff (D-CA) in cosigning the letter are: Representatives Karen Bass (D-CA), Don Beyer (D-VA), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), Anthony Brindisi (D-NY), Cheri Bustos (D-IL), Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), Judy Chu (D-CA), David Cicilline (D-RI), Gil Cisneros (D-CA), Jim Costa (D-CA), TJ Cox (D-CA), Jason Crow (D-CO), Danny Davis (D-IL), Madeleine Dean (D-PA), Ted Deutch (D-FL), Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), Ruben Gallego (D-AZ), John Garamendi (D-CA), Chuy Garcia (D-IL), Jimmy Gomez (D-CA), Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Josh Harder (D-CA), Jim Himes (D-CT), Steven Horsford (D-NV), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Hank Johnson (D-GA), Ro Khanna (D-CA), Steve King (R-IA), Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), James Langevin (D-RI), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Susie Lee (D-NV), Andy Levin (D-MI), John Lewis (D-GA), Ted Lieu (D-CA), Daniel Lipinski (D-IL), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY), James McGovern (D-MA), Seth Moulton (D-MA), Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Donald Norcross (D-NJ), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), Devin Nunes (R-CA), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Chris Pappas (D-NH), Donald Payne (D-NJ), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Kathleen Rice (D-NY), Max Rose (D-NY), Harley Rouda (D-CA), Linda Sanchez (D-CA), John Sarbanes (D-MD), Janice Schakowsky (D-IL), Brad Schneider (D-IL), Brad Sherman (D-CA), Albio Sires (D-NJ), Haley Stevens (D-MI), Tom Suozzi (D-NY), Dina Titus (D-NV), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Lori Trahan (D-MA), David Trone (D-MD), and Ted Yoho (R-FL).
The policy priorities outlined by the Armenian Caucus, which annually spearheads bipartisan efforts to secure support for Armenian-related aid appropriation, are consistent with ANCA testimony presented last month to the House panel tasked with writing the FY2021 foreign aid bill.