Chairman's Press

March 16, 2020

Risch, Barrasso, Rubio, Gardner Call on CCP to Stop Coronavirus Disinformation Campaign, Work with International Community to Constrain Pandemic

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, today released the following statement in response to recent Chinese Communist Party (CCP) disinformation regarding the origins of COVID-19, a coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China: "Our top priority is to protect the Ameri… Continue Reading


March 12, 2020

Risch Statement on Suspension of Travel Between the U.S. and Europe Amid Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement in response to the administration's announcement of a suspension of travel between the United States and Europe during the coronavirus pandemic: "This pandemic health threat respects no borders, and so we must all do what we can to protect our most vulnerable citizens. As chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I will continue my work and the work… Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Chairman Risch Statement on State Department's 2019 Human Rights Report

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement in response to the annual human rights report released by the Department of State today: "The State Department's release of the 2019 human rights report reminds us that as Americans, we are incredibly blessed to be born with undeniable rights that allow us to live freely. Unfortunately, this report shows us that there is no shortage of countries that co… Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Chairman Risch Opening Statement at Hearing on Assad’s Campaign against the Syrian People

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today convened a full committee hearing on the war in Syria, with witness testimony from Caesar, a Syrian military defector for whom the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act was named after, Mr. Omar Alshogre, a former Syrian prisoner and current director of detainee issues at the Syrian Emergency Task Force, and Mr. Raed Al Saleh, the head of the Syria Civil Defense (White Helmets): Chairman Risc… Continue Reading


March 11, 2020

Risch, Coons Applaud Updating of Zimbabwe Sanctions List, Urge More Names to be Added

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Chris Coons (D-Del.), member of the Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health Policy, today applauded the decision by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to update the list of sanctioned individuals for Zimbabwe following their January letter to Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo requesting an update. "We are pleased to see the Departments of Treasury a… Continue Reading


March 10, 2020

Risch, Shaheen Praise Georgian Agreement to Amend Electoral System

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Europe and Regional Security Cooperation, today released the following statements in response to an agreement signed this weekend in Tbilisi that is designed to calm political tensions in Georgia: "I am very glad to see an agreement reached by all sides of the Georgian political spectrum this weekend, and expect to see its full im… Continue Reading


March 07, 2020

Risch Statement on International Women’s Day

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement ahead of International Women's Day on March 8th: "Today, tomorrow, and every day are good days to celebrate women and their contributions at home and abroad. I am very privileged to work with energetic, knowledgeable, and influential women every day in both my personal and committee offices. Each of these women contribute uniquely to our team and I am deepl… Continue Reading


March 05, 2020

Risch, Menendez, Rubio, Co-Host Event with European Parliament on Persecution of Uyghur Minority

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, along with U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), member of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, co-hosted an event yesterday with the European Parliament on the situation of the Uyghur minority in China. Jewher Ilham, daughter of Uyghur scholar Ilham Tohti who has been jailed in China since 2014, gave remarks … Continue Reading


March 05, 2020

Risch Statement on ICC Decision Authorizing Investigation of Alleged U.S. Actions in Afghanistan

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement in response to the International Criminal Court's (ICC) ruling that its chief prosecutor can pursue an investigation into alleged U.S. actions in Afghanistan: "I am disappointed that the ICC has decided to pursue an investigation against U.S. personnel for alleged actions in Afghanistan. The prosecutor's original request was rightly rejected in April, but she… Continue Reading


March 03, 2020

Chairman Risch Welcomes Members and Speakers from Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish Parliaments

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today met with a group of members and speakers of parliament from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland to discuss the importance of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and continued transatlantic collaboration to counter malign activities from Russia and China. "I was glad to welcome a group of members and speakers from the Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, and Polish parliaments to the… Continue Reading


March 03, 2020

Chairman Risch Commends IAEA for Pushing Iran to Fulfill Its Obligations

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement in response to a report from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that details Iran's lack of cooperation in accounting for undeclared nuclear sites and activities: "I commend Director General Grossi and his team at the IAEA for pushing Iran to explain its undeclared nuclear sites and activities. Submitting a second, separate report alongside its … Continue Reading


March 02, 2020

Risch, Menendez Statements on Arrests of Jimmy Lai, Former Lawmakers in Hong Kong

WASHINGTON - 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 in response to the latest round of arrests of Hong Kong protesters, including prominent businessman and publisher Jimmy Lai: "I am very concerned by the arrests of Jimmy Lai and several others last week," said Risch. "The Hong Kong government has been actively arresting and charging protestors and others who supp… Continue Reading


February 28, 2020

Risch, Menendez Statement on Newly Formed Tunisian Government

WASHINGTON - 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 statement of congratulations to the Tunisian people on the formation of their new government: "We welcome the newly formed Tunisian government under Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh, following months of arduous negotiations. Tunisian lawmakers from across the political spectrum came together in pursuit of common cause, voting … Continue Reading


February 27, 2020

Risch, Gardner, Markey Introduce Resolution Congratulating President of Taiwan

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, along with U.S. Senators Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, introduced a resolution today congratulating Tsai Ing-wen on her reelection as president of Taiwan and calling on the administration to send a high-level delegation for President Tsai's in… Continue Reading


February 27, 2020

Chairman Risch Announces Foreign Relations Committee Membership Changes

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today announced committee membership changes for the second session of the 116th Congress. "I am glad to welcome Senator Perdue back to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for the second session of the 116th Congress," said Risch. "I am also glad to announce that Senator Barrasso will assume the role of chairman of the Subcommittee on State Department and USAID Management, International Operati… Continue Reading


February 24, 2020

Risch: Swearing in of New Transitional Leadership is an Opportunity to Deliver Lasting Peace to South Sudan

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on Saturday's swearing in of South Sudan's transitional government leadership including Riek Machar as first vice president: "The swearing-in of South Sudan's new transitional leadership marks a crucial milestone in a much-delayed peace process. Since the country's independence in 2011, South Sudan's leaders have been marked by grand corruption, violence, and… Continue Reading


February 23, 2020

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Power Player of the Week Bertie Bowman airs on Fox News Sunday

BOISE, Idaho - Bertie Bowman, the longest-serving staff member on Capitol Hill, was recognized today on Fox News Sunday as the Power Player of the Week. Bowman started his career on Capitol Hill in 1944 at the age of 13 sweeping the Capitol steps. He now serves as the hearing coordinator for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Click here to watch Bowman's story. Click here to download Bowman's story. ###… Continue Reading


February 20, 2020

SFRC Staff Director Meets with Georgian Youth Groups

TBILISI, Georgia - Today, U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Staff Director Chris Socha met with the leaders of Shame, Dare, and Change, three Georgian youth movements. He discussed the current political climate in Georgia and the important role that groups like these can play to deepen Georgia's democratic traditions. He noted that their voices and support are vital to the long-term success of Georgia's democracy. ###… Continue Reading


February 19, 2020

SFRC Staff Director Meets with Georgian Officials in Tbilisi

TBILISI, Georgia - U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Staff Director Chris Socha arrived in Tbilisi for discussions concerning the current political environment in Georgia with Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia and other government officials, political party leaders, the chairman of the parliament and other parliamentarians, and civil society and international non-governmental organization representatives. In all of his meetings, Mr. Socha reiterated the United States' commitment to Georgia's … Continue Reading


February 18, 2020

Risch: Designating Media Organizations Under CCP Control is a Good Decision

BOISE, Idaho - U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement regarding the Department of State's decision to designate five Chinese media entities as foreign missions under the Foreign Missions Act: "I applaud the decision to designate five Chinese media organizations as foreign missions. In the United States, we believe in a free press and we know these types of organizations are not free. They are under the direct … Continue Reading

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