Senator Bob Corker on Monday made the following statement regarding President Barack Obama’s announcement that the U.S. will impose additional sanctions against Russia.
“The president’s announcement of additional sanctions against Russia represents a step in the right direction, but won't do enough to modify Russian behavior. So far, the administration’s calibrated actions have failed to affect Vladimir Putin’s decisions, and that has to change,” Corker said. “We should pass the bipartisan Senate bill to assist Ukraine, expand the breadth of our sanctions further by targeting more of Russia's economic and political elites, and enhance our military cooperation with our partners in central and eastern Europe. As events unfold, the United States should explore direct security assistance to the Government of Ukraine.”
Last Wednesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed bipartisan legislation in response to the crisis in Ukraine. The bill, which passed 14-3, includes the following provisions.
Loan guarantees: Authorizes the State Department to provide funds for the purpose of loan guarantees for Ukraine.
Asset recovery from corrupt Ukrainian officials: Requires the State Department and Justice Department to assist the Ukrainian government in the recovery of assets amassed by corruption Ukrainian officials, including former President Viktor Yanukovych.
Democracy and governance assistance: Authorizes $50 million for the purpose of technical, democracy, and civil society assistance for Ukraine and other Eastern Partnership countries.
Enhanced security cooperation with Ukraine and Europe: Directs the president and authorizes up to $100 million over FY 2015-2017 to provide security assistance for Ukraine and other countries in Central and Eastern Europe.
Sanctions for threats to Ukraine: Imposes mandatory sanctions, including visa bans and asset freezes, against persons determined to have engaged in violence or serious human rights abuses in Ukraine, activities undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including economic extortion, and on Russian officials and their associates that are responsible for or involved in significant corruption in Ukraine. Also provides for the imposition of additional sanctions on Russian officials and their associates that are responsible for or involved in significant corruption in Russia.
IMF reform: Authorizes quota reforms in the IMF that help maintain American influence in the Fund and its veto power. The budgetary impact of this provision is fully offset with current year spending.