June 24, 2021

Risch Applauds Committee Passage of Legislation on Uyghurs, Israel, Georgia

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on the committee’s approval of six bills, four resolutions, seven nominees, and one FSO list during two business meetings this week:

“I am glad the committee came together today in a bipartisan manner to pass the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act,” said Risch. “As the administration has recognized, the Chinese government’s systematic internment and oppression of Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in China constitutes genocide, and this legislation will further the goal of ensuring that goods produced by forced labor in Xinjiang do not enter the U.S. market.”

“The Abraham Accords, and agreements like them, have the potential to fundamentally change the region for the better,” continued Risch. “I am proud the committee passed legislation today that calls for a strategy to strengthen and expand the Accords, ensure that the agreements reap tangible economic and security benefits, and guarantee that the State Department and other federal agencies are appropriately resourced to drive additional agreements forward.”

“I am also happy our resolution calling on all parties in Georgia to sign and fulfill the agreement made on April 19 passed out of committee earlier this week,” Risch said. “I am concerned by reports of some parties already operating in bad faith to honor the agreement. All political parties in Georgia must put their disagreements in the past and move forward under the provisions of this agreement. The United States will continue to support a democratic future for the Georgian people.”

“Finally, I am particularly pleased our committee voted to send six nominees for posts in Africa to the Senate floor today,” Risch concluded. “There is a concerning number of vacancies in key African countries, including Sudan, and the Senate should move swiftly to confirm these important roles.”

The full list of legislation approved during this week’s business meetings is below:

LEGISLATION

S. 1041, RENACER Act, with an amendment.

S. 65, Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, with an amendment.

S. 2000, a bill to promote the United States-Greece defense partnership, and for other purposes, with an amendment.

S. 93, Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Reauthorization Act, with an amendment.

S. 1061, Israel Relations Normalization Act of 2021, with an amendment.

S. 14, Combatting Global Corruption Act of 2021, with an amendment.

S. Res. 67, a resolution calling for the immediate release of Trevor Reed, a United States citizen who was unjustly found guilty and sentenced to 9 years in a Russian prison.

S. Res. 165, a resolution calling on the Government of the Russian Federation to provide evidence or to release United States citizen Paul Whelan.

S. Res. 107, a resolution expressing the sense of the Senate relating to the 10th anniversary of the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

S. Res. 176, a resolution urging all parties in Georgia to seek prompt implementation of the agreement signed on April 19, 2021, and reaffirming the support of the Senate for Georgia, the territorial integrity of Georgia, and the aspirations of Georgians to join the Euro-Atlantic community.

NOMINATIONS

The Honorable Michele Jeanne Sison, of Maryland, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Career Ambassador, to be an Assistant Secretary of State (International Organization Affairs).

The Honorable Larry Edward Andre, Jr., of Texas, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Federal Republic of Somalia.

The Honorable Maria E. Brewer, of Virginia, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Kingdom of Lesotho.

The Honorable Tulinabo S. Mushingi, of Virginia, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Angola, and to serve concurrently and without additional compensation as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe.

Ms. Elizabeth Moore Aubin, of Virginia, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria.

Mr. Eugene S. Young, of New York, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of the Congo.

Mr. Christopher John Lamora, of Rhode Island, a Career Member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, to be Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Republic of Cameroon.

FSO LISTS

Susannah Holmes, et al., dated April 27, 2021 (PN 479)

The full agendas for these business meetings can be found here and here.

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