BigNews.Biz - Dec 27,2016 - President Signs into Law Portman Ukraine Security Assistance Reforms
Builds on Last Year’s Efforts to Help Ukraine Ward off Russian Aggression
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), founder and co-chair of the Senate Ukraine Caucus, announced that the president signed into law key elements of his Ukraine security assistance package dealing with Ukrainian defense sector reform as part of the FY 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). As amended by Portman’s provisions, the FY 2017 NDAA authorizes $350 million in security assistance, including lethal and non-lethal equipment, training, and technical assistance. Half, or $175 million, of this money is linked to Ukraine’s implementation of critical defense reforms such as instituting civilian control of the military, cooperation and coordination with Ukrainian parliamentary efforts to exercise oversight of the Ministry of Defense and military forces, increased transparency and accountability in defense procurement, and improvement in transparency, accountability, and potential opportunities for privatization. This year’s Ukraine security assistance package builds on provisions that Portman passed last year. Portman issued the following statement:
“As Russian aggression continues in eastern Ukraine, the United States and NATO must provide the sustained economic, political, and military support necessary for Ukraine to secure a democratic future. The Ukrainian people need the moral and material support of the United States to defend themselves as they continue their pursuit for democracy, liberty, and freedom, and they. The provisions signed into law today will help the U.S. keep their promise to Ukrainians longing for peace, and will continue the policy of Democratic and Republican Administrations alike of helping free people defend themselves against tyranny.”
NOTE: Portman, who recently received the Ukrainian-American community’s highest honor – the Shevchenko Freedom Award—has long led the effort to provide Ukraine the kind of assistance necessary to ward off Russian aggression and maintain its territorial integrity. In addition to getting key provisions of his Ukraine security assistance legislation included in the NDAA, Senator Portman has also won a major victory in the fight against propaganda that will help the U.S. and its allies such as Ukraine better counter and combat the extensive propaganda and disinformation operations directed against us from countries like Russia.