Somaliland: Risch on Final Passage of FY2023 NDAA

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U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today applauded the Senate’s final passage of the FY2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA):

Taiwan

“Today’s passage of the FY2023 NDAA brings us one step closer to providing Taiwan with the security authorities and collaborative U.S.-Taiwan defense relationship it needs to effectively deter, and if necessary defeat, Chinese aggression. This has been one of my top priorities, and I will continue to advocate for funding as we consider the latest supplemental request and appropriations legislation.”

The Taiwan Enhanced Resilience Act (Sec. 5501):

  • Authorizes up to $10 billion in Foreign Military Financing grants through 2027 for key capabilities and training for Taiwan, as well as a Foreign Military Financing loan program.
  • Authorizes $1 billion in Presidential Drawdown Authority specifically for Taiwan.
  • Makes Taiwan eligible for a regional contingency stockpile program to ensure important supplies are on the island in advance of major Chinese aggression.
  • Mandates the United States and Taiwan execute a multi-year plan on capability development, training, and other solutions to deter and deny authoritarian CCP objectives.
  • Advances efforts to identify roadblocks and ways to accelerate Foreign Military Sales cases to Taiwan.

Pandemic Preparedness

“The COVID-19 pandemic, once again, has demonstrated that infectious diseases respect no borders – an outbreak anywhere can quickly become a threat everywhere. I’m grateful my bipartisan legislation to better prevent, prepare for, and respond to infectious disease outbreaks before they become global pandemics was included in the FY2023 NDAA.”

The Global Health Security and International Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response Act (Sec. 5559):

  • Enhances strategic planning to get ahead of the next pandemic.
  • Strengthens interagency coordination and diplomatic engagement.
  • Promotes transparency, accountability, and long-term results.
  • Strengthens USAID’s emergency response authority and capacity.
  • Seeks to enhance early warning and enable partners to act.
  • Creates opportunities for innovation and burden-sharing.

Food Security

“As tyrants and war criminals like Putin use food as a weapon, it’s more important than ever to help people combat food insecurity and grow their way out of poverty. U.S. farmers are leaders in transforming global agriculture and reducing poverty, and I’ve been proud to support programs like the Feed the Future public-private partnership with the University of Idaho on blight resistant potatoes. The Global Food Security Act Reauthorization included in the FY2023 NDAA provides a roadmap to deliver emergency assistance when and where it’s needed most, then help people transition away from dependence to self-reliance.”

The Global Food Security Reauthorization Act (Sec. 5588):

  • Requires the administration to develop a whole-of-government strategy to address global food insecurity and hunger. The strategy would emphasize agricultural development, improving maternal and child nutrition, building the resilience of communities, and civil society engagement.
  • Ensures the alignment of U.S. assistance with country-owned strategies to enhance agricultural productivity, household income, local economies, and food and nutrition security to work toward the ultimate goal of transitioning countries and communities away from the need for U.S. assistance under this act.
  • Improves upon existing monitoring and evaluation practices to ensure the effective use of U.S. taxpayer dollars.
  • Requires that the administration report to Congress and to the American people annually about the strategy, its results, and the use of foreign assistance funds.
  • Authorizes appropriations through 2028 to carry out international development assistance programs and activities under the strategy.
  • Ensures these oversight measures are authorized through 2028.

State Department Authorization

“This year’s State Department authorization includes my Secure Embassy Construction and Counterterrorism Act and Diplomatic Support and Security Act – two measures that will make generational change at the State Department. It’s time the Department move away from risk avoidance, and towards allowing our diplomats to get out from embassy walls and back to the business of diplomacy and advancing America’s interests abroad. This legislation will help our people get back to the business of engaging in diplomacy and advancing America’s interests abroad.”

The Secure Embassy Construction and Counterterrorism Act (Sec. 9301):

  • Provides the State Department the flexibility to buy smaller plots 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.

The Diplomatic Support and Security Act (Sec. 9302):

  • Requires recommendations to streamline the security clearance approval process.
  • Reforms the current Accountability Review Board process and procedures for investigating serious security incidents on a U.S. mission abroad, and provides flexibility for State on embassy facilities and construction to ensure that diplomats can better access and engage with local populations.

Post-employment restrictions on Senate-confirmed officials at the Department of State (Sec. 9215):

  • Prohibits former senior State Department officials representing or advising adversary governments like China, Russia, Iran, Cuba, and Syria, and bans former secretaries and deputy secretaries from advising or representing any foreign government. This is the first ban of its kind in the federal government.

Somaliland

“The Horn of Africa faces an increasing number of complex challenges, yet the State Department continues to work off outdated policies and diplomatic frameworks that don’t meet today’s challenges. I’m pleased to see the most important part of my Somaliland legislation included in the FY2023 NDAA, which will require the United States to explore all possible mutually-beneficial relationships with stable and democratic partners, including Somaliland. I look forward to engaging with the State Department on this issue in the months ahead.”

The report and feasibility study on collaboration to meet shared national security interests in East Africa (Sec. 1275):

  • Requires the Department of State to annually report to Congress on U.S. assistance to Somaliland, as well as the feasibility of establishing a U.S.-Somaliland partnership, including opportunities for collaboration on regional security issues

Ecuador

“Ecuador has made significant strides in restoring market-friendly economic policies and its democratic institutions. This bipartisan effort encourages bilateral cooperation to promote economic prosperity and regional stability through stronger commercial ties and greater transparency, respect for the rule of law, and resilience against state and non-state malign influences.”

The U.S.-Ecuador Partnership Act (Sec. 5541):

  • Requires a strategy to expand economic and commercial ties between the U.S. and Ecuador, and facilitate conditions for inclusive economic growth, including for Afro-Ecuadorian and Indigenous communities;
  • Reinforces Ecuador’s efforts to combat illicit economies, including corruption, human trafficking, and illegal, unregulated, and unreported fishing;
  • Strengthens bilateral security cooperation on cyber, law enforcement, and penitentiary issues, as well as the challenges posed by the malicious activities of foreign states; and
  • Supports Ecuador’s leadership on environmental conservation and stewardship.

Additional legislation Senator Risch supported in the FY2023 NDAA includes:

  • Ukraine Invasion War Crimes Deterrence and Accountability Act (Sec. 5948)
  • Ending global wildlife poaching and trafficking (Sec. 5943)
  • Burma Unified through Rigorous Military Accountability Act (Sec. 5567)
  • Interagency strategy to disrupt and dismantle narcotics production and trafficking and affiliated networks linked to the regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria (Sec. 1238)
  • Iran Nuclear Weapons Capability and Terrorism Monitoring Act (Sec. 5593)
  • Middle East integrated air and missile defense (Sec. 1658)
  • Statement of policy and report on engaging with Niger (Sec. 5597)
  • FENTANYL Results Act (Sec. 5551)

Foreign Relations Committee

www.foreign.senate.gov

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