December 11, 2014

Senate Unanimously Passes Corker Legislation to Support Ukraine, Expand Sanctions Against Russia

Bipartisan bill strengthens U.S. response to Russia, provides lethal military and non-military assistance for Ukraine

WASHINGTON – Following Senate passage today of his bill to provide lethal military and non-military assistance for Ukraine and expand sanctions against Russia, U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said unanimous support for the legislation demonstrates “a firm commitment to Ukrainian sovereignty” in response to a continued Russian invasion. Since the last round of U.S. sanctions on September 12, Russia has repeatedly violated its commitments under a proposed ceasefire by affirming an illegal rebel election in Eastern Ukraine and continuing to support separatist fighters with troops and heavy weapons. The Obama administration has yet to approve the Ukrainian government’s request for arms.

"The hesitant U.S. response to Russia’s continued invasion of Ukraine threatens to escalate this conflict even further. Unanimous support for our bill demonstrates a firm commitment to Ukrainian sovereignty and to making sure Putin pays for his assault on freedom and security in Europe,” said Corker.

In addition to granting lethal military and non-military assistance and expanding sanctions against Russia, the Ukraine Freedom Support Act, coauthored by Corker and Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), also would provide Ukraine with energy, defense sector, and civil society assistance, and expand broadcasting programs to counter Russian propaganda in countries of the former Soviet Union.

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