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Senator Blunt, GOP Colleagues Introduce Bill To Deter Russian Aggression

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NEWS RELEASE ISSUED BY THE OFFICE OF U.S. SENATOR ROY BLUNT (MO.)

Senator Blunt, GOP Colleagues Introduce Bill To Deter Russian Aggression

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) co-sponsored the “Russian Aggression Prevention Act of 2014” in an effort to deter Russian aggression in Europe, which threatens regional security and prosperity that is critical for maintaining economic growth in the United States. Blunt serves as a member of both defense authorizing and appropriations committees in the Senate.

The bill was introduced by U.S. Senator Bob Corker (Tenn.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and is co-sponsored by 19 of their colleagues. To read the bill, click here.

“As the situation in Ukraine continues to escalate with little hope that the Russians will work towards a peaceful resolution, this legislation sends a strong message to Ukraine and our allies that the U.S. will not tolerate Russian aggression,” said Blunt. “This legislation will give our allies in NATO and Eastern Europe the military and economic resources they need to deter future attempts by Russia to topple free, sovereign nations.”

The Russian Aggression Prevention Act of 2014 is co-sponsored by U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (Fla.), Mitch McConnell (Ky.), Kelly Ayotte (N.H.), Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), John Hoeven (N.D.), John McCain (Ariz.), John Cornyn (Texas), Lindsey Graham (S.C.), Mark Kirk (Ill.), John Barrasso (Wyo.), Jim Risch (Idaho), Dan Coats (Ind.), Pat Roberts (Kan.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), Jim Inhofe (Okla.), Rob Portman (Ohio), Orrin Hatch (Utah), John Thune (S.D.), and Jeff Flake (Ariz.).

Key Provisions Of The Russian Aggression Prevention Act:

Strengthen NATO

  • Increases substantially U.S. and NATO support for the armed forces of Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia, as well as other countries determined appropriate by the president.
  • Requires the president to accelerate implementation of missile defense in Europe and provide other missile defense support for our NATO allies.

Deter Russian aggression

  • Places immediate new sanctions on any Russian officials and agents involved in the illegal occupation of Crimea, as well as on corrupt Russian officials and their supporters, and broadens and solidifies the sanctions already imposed by the administration.
  • Imposes immediate new sanctions tied to the destabilization of eastern Ukraine on four key Russian banks: Sberbank, VTB Bank, VEB Bank, Gazprombank, as well as on the Gazprom, Novatek, Rosneft energy monopolies, and Rosoboronexport, the major Russian arms dealer.
  • If Russian armed forces cross further into, or Russia further annexes, the sovereign territory of Ukraine or any other country, even tougher sanctions would (1) cut all senior Russian officials, their companies, and their supporters off from the world’s financial system; (2) target any Russian entities owned by the Russian government or sanctioned individuals across the arms, defense, energy, financial services, metals, or mining sectors in Russia; (3) and cut Russian banks off from the U.S. banking system.

Harden our non-NATO allies

  • Authorizes the president to provide $100 million worth of direct military assistance to Ukraine, including anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons and small arms, based on a needs and capabilities assessment of the Ukrainian armed forces. It also encourages the sharing of intelligence with Ukraine.
  • Provides authority for exports of U.S. natural gas to all WTO members, including key countries in Europe, and provides support to encourage the U.S. private sector to invest in energy projects in Ukraine, Georgia, and Moldova.
  • Imposes significant diplomatic measures on Russia, limits Russia’s access to advanced U.S. oil and gas technologies, provides support for Russian civil society, and focuses U.S. attention on corruption in Russia, potential treaty violations, and other strategically important matters.
  • Provides Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia with major non-NATO ally status to facilitate their access to military equipment and expands U.S. and NATO military exercises and training with key non-NATO states. It also prohibits U.S. recognition of the annexation of Crimea and provides support for civil society activities in former Soviet countries, as well as expands U.S. government counter-propaganda efforts in such countries.

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