Ranking Member's Press

July 17, 2013

Chairman Menenadez Opening Statement at Nomination Hearing for Samantha Power to Serve as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, delivered this opening statement, as prepared for delivery, at today's nomination hearing for Samantha Power to serve as Ambassador to the United Nations. The statement follows: "Good morning, Ms. Power. Welcome to the Foreign Relations Committee. Your nomination as Ambassador to the United Nations has come with much fanfare -- and with some criticism, which - at the end of the day -- means you mus… Continue Reading


July 16, 2013

Chairman Menendez Opening Statement at Hearing, “The Embassy Security and Personnel Protection Act of 2013”

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, delivered this opening statement, as prepared for delivery, at today's hearing, "The Embassy Security and Personnel Protection Act of 2013." The statement follows: "Today our real focus is ensuring the security of our missions abroad and the safety of our Foreign Service personnel. That has always been - and will remain -- a priority of this Committee. Having said that, I hope to have the support… Continue Reading


July 11, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement of Verdict against Sergei Magnitsky for Tax Evasion

WASHINGTON, DC - Chairman Robert Menendez released this statement following a posthumous guilty verdict today in a Moscow court against Sergei Magnitsky for tax evasion. "Sergei Magnitsky's death and the circumstances around his imprisonment are shameful," said Menendez. "Today's conviction of Sergei Magnitsky - three years after his death - is nothing short of a message to Russia's activist community of the repercussions of opposing the state. The trend toward authoritarianism in Russia and t… Continue Reading


July 11, 2013

Chairman Menendez Opening Statement at Hearing, “Assessing the Transition in Afghanistan”

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, delivered this opening statement, as prepared for delivery, at today's hearing, "Assessing the Transition in Afghanistan." The statement follows (video followed by text): "Today's hearing on Afghanistan comes none too soon. With 63,000 U.S. troops still based there and the upcoming political and security transitions in 2014 just around the corner, now is the time to take stock of our efforts and… Continue Reading


July 10, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement on American Companies’ Plan to Improve Garment Factory Safety in Bangladesh

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement in response to today's announcement by a consortium of American companies to improve garment factory safety in Bangladesh. "I welcome the efforts by leading North American retailers and Senators Mitchell and Snowe to come together and take decisive action to help improve factory safety conditions in Bangladesh. The creation of the Alliance for Bangladesh Worke… Continue Reading


July 03, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement on Developing Situation in Egypt

WASHINGTON, DC - Chairman Robert Menendez released the following statement regarding the developing situation in Egypt. "Circumstances in Egypt are rapidly unfolding. During this period of upheaval it is critical that all parties exercise restraint, that protests are peaceful, and that violence is rejected. Already too many lives have been lost during this period of unrest, including that of an American citizen. It is imperative that a political solution be reached for the sake of the Egyptian … Continue Reading


July 01, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement Calling on Russia to Facilitate Edward Snowden’s Return to the U.S.

Newark, NJ - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called on Russia to facilitate the return of Edward Snowden to the United States. The statement follows: "Edward Snowden should return to the United States on his own volition or be returned home to face espionage charges. His alleged actions are of the utmost sensitivity to our national security and hiding out in Russia would be highly inconsistent with the principles he claims to defend by seek… Continue Reading


June 28, 2013

Legislation Granting Taiwan Observer Status at International Civil Aviation Organization Passes Congress, Heads to President for Signature

WASHINGTON, DC -Legislation advancing efforts for Taiwan to obtain observer status at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Assembly passed the Congress today and heads to the President for signature. Identical legislation was introduced by U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and U.S. Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) in the Senate, and by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) and Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY)… Continue Reading


June 27, 2013

Chairman Menendez Applauds Administration’s Decision to Suspend Preferential Trade Status to Bangladesh

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, commended the Administration's decision to suspend Generalized System of Preference (GSP) benefits to Bangladesh. Earlier this month, Menendez presided over a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing examining labor issues in Bangladesh, following the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory. "It is long overdue for Bangladesh to reform its labor practices and ensure workers' rights," said Menend… Continue Reading


June 26, 2013

Chairman Menendez Calls on the Russian Government to Release Fugitive Edward Snowden into the Custody of the United States

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called on Russia to cease sheltering international fugitive Edward Snowden and release him immediately into the custody of the United States. Menendez also warned Ecuador's government led by President Rafael Correa not to grant Snowden asylum, adding that such a decision would severely jeopardize the preferential trade access provided to goods from Ecuador under the Generalized System of Pre… Continue Reading


June 25, 2013

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Approves Legislation Expanding U.S. Exports to Africa, Compensating American Hostages Held in Iran during Embassy Crisis

WASHINGTON, DC - Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) presided over the Senate Foreign Relations Committee business meeting today, where one bill to create American jobs through increased exports to Africa, another bill to compensate former American hostages held in Iran, as well as five senate resolutions and three ambassadorial nominations were approved by committee members. Senators advanced legislation calling on the Obama administration to establish a trade strategy for Africa that will increas… Continue Reading


June 24, 2013

Chairman Menendez: “Edward Snowden is a Fugitive Deserving Prosecution, not a Whistleblower Worthy of Protection.”

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, urged the Russian government to cooperate with U.S. extradition requests for Edward Snowden, calling him a fugitive who "betrayed the trust of the American people." "Edward Snowden is not a whistleblower worthy of protection, but a fugitive deserving of prosecution," said Chairman Menendez. "He violated his sworn pledge to protect classified information. He jeopardized our national security. A… Continue Reading


June 20, 2013

Chairman Menendez, Senator Inhofe Applaud Passage of Bill Granting Taiwan Observer Status at International Civil Aviation Organization

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and U.S. Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) applauded the passage of legislation advancing efforts for Taiwan to obtain observer status at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Assembly. Menendez and Inhofe are co-chairs of the Senate Taiwan Caucus. The bill directs the Secretary of State to develop and implement a plan to obtain ICAO observer status for Taiwan. "We in the United … Continue Reading


June 17, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement on Camp Liberty Attack in Iraq

WASHINGTON, DC - Chairman Robert Menendez released the following statement regarding the attack on Camp Liberty in Iraq. "I condemn the attack on Camp Liberty in the strongest and most forceful of terms. The attack is a tragic reminder that every person living in Camp Liberty, as well as Camp Ashraf remains in a permanent state of uncertainty, their lives constantly endangered and their homes targets of acts of terrorism. The Government of Iraq must do more to ensure their security, including … Continue Reading


June 06, 2013

Chairman Menendez Opening Statement at Hearing, “Labor Issues in Bangladesh”

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, delivered this opening statement, as prepared for delivery, at today's hearing, "Labor Issues in Bangladesh." "It's not often that the Foreign Relations Committee holds a hearing like this - in fact, the last labor hearing this Committee chaired was the debate giving PNTR status to China in 2000. So it's been awhile. But as I said in an op-ed that was published today, the tragedy at Rana Plaza - the … Continue Reading


June 06, 2013

Menendez Op-Ed on Labor Issues in Bangladesh: “A Cry for Worker Fairness”

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, wrote an op-ed below titled, "A Cry for Worker Fairness" which was published in Reuters. The op-ed appears below: Reuters: A cry for worker fairness June 5, 2013 @ 6:09 pm By Senator Robert Menendez The tragedy at the Rana Plaza clothing factory was a sober reminder that Bangladeshi garment workers still lack basic rights and protections. My mother was a seamstress. She worked in the texti… Continue Reading


June 04, 2013

Chairman Menendez Statement on Ruling by Egyptian Court against NGO Employees

WASHINGTON, DC - Chairman Robert Menendez released the following statement following the ruling by an Egyptian court to convict 43 NGO employees earlier today: "Today's ruling by an Egyptian court to convict 43 NGO employees is a step in the wrong direction for a nation undergoing a democratic transition. These workers, many of them American, were on the ground in Egypt over the last two years to encourage democratic processes, openness, civilian participation and electoral integrity. The cour… Continue Reading


June 04, 2013

Chairman Menendez Expresses Concerns over Chinese Human Rights Violations to Obama before Meeting with President Xi Jinping

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, wrote President Obama ahead of his June 7-8 meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping, expressing deep concern over ongoing human rights violations taking place in China, oftentimes by officials acting outside China's legal structures. The letter follows: The Honorable Barack ObamaPresident of the United StatesThe White HouseWashington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President: I was pleased to hear the anno… Continue Reading


May 31, 2013

Menendez Statement on the Sanctioning of Companies Helping Iran Evade Sanctions

NEWARK, NJ - U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued this statement following the Administration's announcement to sanction companies for helping Iran evade sanctions. "It is a losing strategy for companies to assist Iran in evading sanctions and today's announcement serves as a warning: Cease this illicit activity immediately or face severe consequences. Increased sanctions from encouraging further reductions in energy sector purchases from… Continue Reading


May 29, 2013

Chairman Robert Menendez Meets with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu

JERUSALEM, ISRAEL - U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-NJ) met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today. The following comments were made during the meeting: "For twenty years, as a member of the House of Representatives and the Senate and now as the Chairman of the SenateForeign Relations Committee, I've always asked two questions in terms of the US foreign policy abroad: What is in the national interest of the United States? What is in the national securi… Continue Reading

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