House Measure Counters DoD Contract with Russian Arms Supplier to Syria
The House of Representatives voted overwhelming to pass a measure introduced by Jim Moran (D-VA) today that ends the Department of Defense’s arms contract with Rosoboronexport, a Russian state-owned arms manufacturer supplying arms to the Assad regime. The American Syrian Coalition (ASC) thanked Congressman Moran for sponsoring the measure, which was adopted by a vote of 407-5 and attached to the 2013 defense spending bill.
Roxoboronexport was under sanction, explicityly named on the U.S. Specially Designated Nationals list for allegedly supplying Syria and Iran with equipment designed for the creation of weapons of mass destruction. ASC has been working hard to emphasize in Congress how important it is that the United States Government send a signal to Russia that continued military support for the Assad Regime is a red-line,” said Sasha Ghosh-Siminoff, the Executive Director of the Syrian Emergency Task Force.
Human Rights First commended the move, applauding Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), who co-sponsored the amendment, for his leadership and speech on the floor of the House. “I was shocked to discover our own government is buying Russian-made helicopters from Rosoboronexport,” Rep. Ellison said. “Put simply, our government is supporting Syria’s arms dealer, which is enabling the Syrian regime’s bloody crackdown. This is wrong. It’s unacceptable. And it’s not what the United States stands for.”