Sending Office: Kinzinger, Adam
Sent By:
Sebastian.DeLuca@mail.house.gov

Dear Colleague,

Please join us in sending a letter to the Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs requesting that they include provisions from H.R. 4681, the No Assistance
for Assad Act
, in the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2019.

The ongoing conflict in Syria has reached epic proportions with over 500,000 Syrians dead, including 50,000 children. For these reasons, we worked together to draft and introduce the No Assistance for Assad Act, which would place conditions on American assistance
for early recovery, stabilization, and reconstruction in Syrian territories controlled by the Assad regime. By limiting assistance for reconstruction efforts in areas controlled by the Government of Syria or their allies, we would be sending a strong message
to the Assad regime that the American people will not support efforts to legitimize their rule.

If you would like to cosign this request, or have any further questions, please contact Sebastian De Luca (Sebastian.Deluca@mail.house.gov) in Congressman Kinzinger’s office or Mira Resnick (Mira.Resnick@mail.house.gov)
at the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Democratic Staff. This letter will close at 3:00 pm today.

Sincerely,

_______________________________                                  ______________________________

ADAM KINZINGER                                                             ELIOT ENGEL

Member of Congress                                                              Member of Congress

 

—————————————————————————————————

 

The Honorable Harold Rogers                                    The Honorable Nita Lowey

Chairman                                                                     Ranking Member

Subcommittee on State, Foreign                                Subcommittee on State, Foreign        

   Operations, and Related Programs                              Operations, and Related Programs

Committee on Appropriations                                   Committee on Appropriations

HT-2 The Capitol                                                       1016 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515                                              Washington, DC 20515

 

Dear Chairman Rogers and Ranking Member Lowey:

As you begin deliberations on the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2019, we write to respectfully request that you include provisions from H.R. 4681, the No Assistance for Assad Act, which we introduced on
December 19, 2017. 

The ongoing conflict in Syria has reached epic proportions with over 500,000 Syrians dead, including 50,000 children.  The barbaric regime of Bashar al-Assad, along with his Russian and Iranian backers, has continued to kill and injure civilians with impunity
as he seeks to consolidate his power over the last rebel-held areas in the country.  The horrifying images recently released out of East Ghouta depicting the Syrian barrel bombing of hospitals and town centers should push the global community to act to stop
the slaughter.  While we hope for a solution that will not only stop the violence, but also work toward a transition, we recognize that as Assad consolidates territory and power, he or elements of his regime will likely be involved in the future structure
of Syria. 

For these reasons, we worked together to draft and introduce the No Assistance for Assad Act.  The purpose of this legislation is to ensure that the security of the Syrian people will be central to reconstruction and stabilization efforts in Syria.  Our
bill would place conditions on American assistance for early recovery, stabilization, and reconstruction in Syrian territories controlled by the Assad regime.  Such assistance would only be available on the condition that the Assad regime ceases indiscriminate
use of weapons and any attacks against civilians and civilian facilities; releases all political prisoners and provides full access to Syrian prisons for investigations by appropriate international human rights organizations; removes senior officials of the
Government of Syria who are complicit in human rights abuses; and moves to organize free and fair elections for a new government to establish an independent judiciary, among other actions.

We believe that placing these conditions on American assistance will send a strong message to the Assad regime and his Iranian and Russian patrons that the American people will not support their efforts to legitimize their rule.  The United States must not
aid in the rebuilding of infrastructure that was only destroyed due to their heinous actions and, once rebuilt, could be used to continue the indiscriminate killing of civilians. 

Furthermore, according to the 2016 Transparency International Corruption Index, Syria is among the most corrupt countries in the world.  Reconstruction funds can be expected to be siphoned off to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, given the
rampant corruption.  Therefore, the United States should not be funding projects where there is a reasonable expectation that the funds may be misappropriated.

Again, we urge you to consider including language from this important legislation in the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act so that we may continue to send a message to the Syrian people that we stand with them against the
barbaric atrocities inflicted by the Assad regime.  We recognize the challenges of the current fiscal environment and thank you for your effort and dutiful consideration of this request.  Your leadership on the Appropriations Committee is most appreciated. 
Should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: Appropriations, Budget, Foreign Affairs

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