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Risch Introduces Legislation to Enhance Security at U.S. Diplomatic Facilities

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced the Secure Embassy Construction and Counterterrorism Act of 2022, legislation to enhance security at U.S. diplomatic facilities.

“As the world becomes more dangerous and complicated, we need the State Department to prioritize diplomacy and effectively spend taxpayer money to defend U.S. national interests. It’s time the Department rebalances its risk calculus and gets our diplomats back in the field to advance U.S. values and interests and compete against adversaries across the globe,” said Risch. “Chinese, Russian, and Iranian diplomats don’t have the restrictions our diplomats do. This legislation will make it easier for U.S. diplomats to do their jobs, getting them out of our embassies and meeting with local populations. This bill will also save the U.S. taxpayer potentially billions of dollars by allowing the State Department the flexibility to build smaller embassies and consulates while maintaining the same level of security.”

This legislation:

  • Provides the State Department the flexibility to buy smaller parcels of land in low-threat security environments, leading to substantial savings for taxpayers
  • Makes it easier to put embassies and consulates in dense urban environments, rather than building fortress embassies way outside of town.
  • Keeps our diplomats near local officials and other diplomats, better enabling them to advance U.S. national interests. 

Full text of the legislation can be found here.