April 14, 2022

Congressional Delegation Meets with Australian Leaders

WASHINGTON – The following joint statement was issued by Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), and Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), and U.S. Representative Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) after visiting Australia.

The bipartisan, bicameral delegation met with senior leaders of the Australian government and opposition party on areas of mutual concern for both nations.

“For more than seventy years, the alliance between the United States and Australia has withstood challenges and has proven to be mutually beneficial. We look forward to strengthening our alliance even further in the coming years.”

AUKUS Partnership:

“We are glad to have met with various senior leaders of the Australian government and opposition party regarding our support for the recent Australia-United Kingdom-United States (AUKUS) partnership, which will only strengthen the United States’ and Australia’s defense and economic relationship. In bolstering trilateral cooperation in military capabilities and critical technologies while providing Australia with nuclear powered submarine capability, our partnership only further advances our nations’ mutual security interests and enhances our abilities to deter malign activity in the region.”

Relationship with China:

“We share Australia’s concern regarding Beijing’s aggressive efforts to expand its influence, particularly through its proposed security pact with the Solomon Islands, and hope to work with Australia to address this behavior. We deeply admire Australia’s own resistance to Chinese digital authoritarianism and applaud its decision to reject Huawei 5G, which serves as a powerful show of strength in the face of immense pressure and demonstrates the Australian government’s unwavering commitment to the security and prosperity of its people.”

Ukraine:

“We express our deep appreciation for Australia’s provision of significant security assistance, including armored vehicles and anti-tank missiles, to Ukraine’s courageous defenders. Australia plays a key role in the international coalition to hold Russia accountable, joining with like-minded democracies to impose devastating sanctions on the Putin regime. We will continue to work closely with Australia to support Ukraine as it stands up to Russian aggression.”

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