Chairman's Press

July 10, 2020

Risch, Menendez Statement on Turkey’s Hagia Sophia

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement in reaction to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's effort to convert the Hagia Sophia Museum of Istanbul from a world-famous cultural site into a mosque: "Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey is a place of deep spiritual significance for people of diverse backgrounds from around the world. For more than three qua… Continue Reading


July 09, 2020

Chairman Risch Statement on WHO Decision to Convene Interim Review of COVID-19 Response

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement after Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced that the World Health Organization (WHO) will authorize an interim review of its COVID-19 response by an independent panel of experts: "I am encouraged by the WHO's agreement to convene an interim review of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Consistent with the recommendations that I and my fellow Senate Fo… Continue Reading


July 01, 2020

Chairman Risch Reaffirms U.S.-Canada Relationship With Deputy Prime Minister Freeland

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement after a conversation with Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Freeland: "Today, I had a productive conversation with Deputy Prime Minister Freeland, covering many issues that are of great importance to people in both the United States and Canada. I know Ms. Freeland understands that despite ongoing challenges with COVID-19, keeping the northern border between our … Continue Reading


July 01, 2020

Chairman Risch Statement on CCP’s Adoption of Hong Kong Security Law

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) adopted a national security law for Hong Kong: "The CCP's adoption of a national security law for Hong Kong essentially ends Hong Kong's autonomy. It subjects Hong Kong to the CCP's police-state, and puts every Hong Kong resident at risk. "The law provides for a maximum sentence of life in prison for vaguely defined ac… Continue Reading


June 30, 2020

Risch, Menendez, McCaul, Engel Support UN Cross-Border Humanitarian Operations in Syria

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Representatives Michael McCaul (R-Texas) and Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), ranking member and chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today released the following statement in support of diplomatic negotiations at the United Nations (UN) to maintain the two current cross-border humanitarian operations and restore the Ya'rubiyah border crossing betw… Continue Reading


June 30, 2020

Chairman Risch Opening Statement at Hearing on COVID-19 and U.S. International Pandemic Preparedness, Prevention, and Response: Additional Perspectives

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today convened a second full committee hearing on COVID-19 and U.S. international pandemic preparedness, prevention, and response, with witness testimony from the Honorable Mark Dybul, M.D., co-director of the Center for Global Health Practice and Impact and professor in the Department of Medicine at Georgetown University Medical Center, Dr. Ashish K. Jha, M.D., director of the Harvard Global Healt… Continue Reading


June 26, 2020

Risch, Menendez, Rubio, Cardin Encourage Guyanese Authorities to Begin Democratic Transition of Power

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Ben Cardin (D-Md.), chairman and ranking member of the Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Transnational Crime, Civilian Security, Democracy, Human Rights, and Global Women's Issues, today released the following statement encouraging Guyanese authorities to begin a democratic transition of power that reflects the results of th… Continue Reading


June 25, 2020

Chairman Risch Statement on 70th Anniversary of Korean War

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War: "On this day 70 years ago, tens of thousands of soldiers from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) crossed the 38th parallel and invaded the Republic of Korea (ROK). Millions of U.S., ROK, and United Nations Command soldiers and civilians fought, suffered, and lost their lives in the thre… Continue Reading


June 25, 2020

Chairman Risch Applauds State Department’s Annual Trafficking in Persons Report

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of State released its 2020 Trafficking in Persons Report: "I applaud the State Department's release of the 2020 Trafficking in Persons report today. Human trafficking is a serious, global issue that affects an estimated 25 million people. "Unfortunately, this report highlights that there is still much work to be done to ensure we put … Continue Reading


June 25, 2020

Chairman Risch Commends End of Ebola Outbreak in Northeastern D.R. Congo

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today commended the declaration by the Democratic Republic of the Congo's (DRC) Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) that the Ebola Virus Disease (Ebola) outbreak that has ravaged northeastern DRC since August 2018 has ended. "As the world battles the coronavirus pandemic and the DRC continues to fight Ebola in Mbandaka, Équateur Province, the declaration of the end of… Continue Reading


June 24, 2020

Chairman Risch Discusses Sudan’s Transition with Prime Minister Hamdok

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today spoke with Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok about Sudan's historic transition. "I was glad to speak with Prime Minister Hamdok this afternoon to discuss a number of important issues, including the statutory and policy process for the United States to lift Sudan's State Sponsor of Terrorism designation," said Risch. "I have been in close contact with the Department of State regarding th… Continue Reading


June 24, 2020

Risch, Menendez, Gardner, Coons Statement on China’s Indictment of Canadian Citizens Kovrig and Spavor

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, and Chris Coons (D-Del.) today released the following statement after the Chinese government announced it will prosecute two Canadian citizens, Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor, on alleged spying charges. Kovrig and Spavor were detain… Continue Reading


June 23, 2020

Chairman Risch Welcomes Foreign Relations Committee Summer Interns

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, recently welcomed eight new committee interns for the summer term. "I'm glad to welcome a new group of talented interns to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for this summer," said Risch. "As we continue to face unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these students and recent graduates will have a firsthand look at how Congress handles major global issues. I am confident they w… Continue Reading


June 19, 2020

Risch, Menendez, Colleagues Introduce Bipartisan Resolution Reaffirming U.S.-Ecuador Partnership

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, were joined by Senators Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), in introducing a Senate resolution yesterday reaffirming the partnership between the United States and the Republic of Ecuador. The bipartisan resolution recognizes the restoration and advancement of economic relations, security, and developmen… Continue Reading


June 18, 2020

Chairman Risch Opening Statement at Hearing on COVID-19 and U.S. International Pandemic Preparedness, Prevention, and Response

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today convened a full committee hearing on COVID-19 and U.S. international pandemic preparedness, prevention, and response, with witness testimony from Mr. James Richardson, director of foreign assistance at the U.S. Department of State, Mr. Chris Milligan, counselor at the U.S. Agency for International Development, and Mr. Garrett Grigsby, director of global affairs at the U.S. Department of Healt… Continue Reading


June 18, 2020

Chairman Risch: America Will Continue to Support the Aspirations of the Syrian People

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, provided the following remarks during a virtual event titled "Protecting Syrian Civilians: Implementing the Caesar Act" hosted by the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, in cooperation with the Syrian Emergency Task Force. The event focused on the implementation of the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act. "Hi, I'm Senator Jim Risch,… Continue Reading


June 17, 2020

Chairman Risch Applauds Signing of Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act Into Law

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today issued the following statement after President Trump signed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act of 2020 (S.3744) into law: "I am glad President Trump signed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act into law today," said Risch. "The internment of at least a million Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities is reprehensible and inexcusable, and the Chinese Communist Party and government must be held to acc… Continue Reading


June 17, 2020

Chairman Risch Hosts SFRC Virtual Coffee with King Abdullah II of Jordan

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today hosted a virtual committee coffee with King Abdullah II of Jordan to discuss the strong, strategic relationship between the United States and Jordan. "The United States and Jordan share a long history of mutual cooperation on issues ranging from security to trade. This relationship is one based on shared values and regional objectives," said Risch. "Jordan has been central to promoting peace… Continue Reading


June 17, 2020

Chairman Risch Statement on Administration’s Announcement of Caesar Act Designations

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement after the administration announced 39 designations under the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act and Executive Order 13894 to begin a sustained campaign of increased economic and political pressure against the Assad regime. "I welcome today's action, which reflects a government-wide effort to ensure justice and accountability for the Syrian people. This send… Continue Reading


June 12, 2020

Senate Approves Risch-Menendez Resolution Lauding State Department Professionals for Repatriation Efforts During COVID-19

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statements after the Senate unanimously passed their bipartisan resolution this week lauding State Department professionals for their efforts to bring home Americans stranded abroad during the COVID-19 pandemic. Along with U.S. embassy staff around the globe and in collaboration with the United States Transportation Comma… Continue Reading

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