The US Senate committee adopted a resolution recognizing Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism
If the decision is approved by the US Senate, Russia will be the 5th country on the State Department list, which includes Cuba, North Korea, Iran and Syria
Senate Committee The US Foreign Relations Council considered on Wednesday a resolution to include Russia on the list of countries that support terrorism. Senate documents list this bill as Resolution 623. It was proposed by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham on May 9, 2022, and, as a Democratic cosponsor, the resolution was supported by Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal.
The resolution notes that now the US State Department recognizes 4 countries as state sponsors of terrorism: Cuba, North Korea, Iran and Syria.
As arguments for recognizing Russia as a state supporting terrorism, the senators urge to take into account the following facts :
– at the direction of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the government of the Russian Federation encouraged and continues to encourage acts of international terrorism against political opponents and national states;
– on the orders of President Putin, the Russian government launched a campaign of terror using brute force against civilians during the Second Chechen War; wounding countless innocent men, women and children;
– since 2014, the Russian government has been supporting separatists who commit acts of violence against Ukrainian civilians in Donbass;
– since the Russian Federation entered the civil war in Syria in 2015, the Russian Federation has been targeting innocent Syrian citizens by attacking civilian markets, medical facilities and schools;
– the Russian government has been providing material support for Syria, a country currently considered a state sponsor of terrorism that has been used against the Syrian people;
– according to the Congressional Research Service, the Russian Federation spreads terror around the world through private military mercenary networks such as the Wagner group in an attempt to “project power cheaply and negatively”;
– the Wagner group cooperates with the Ministry defense of the Russian Federation to support the goals of the foreign policy of the Russian Federation;
– The US Department of the Treasury defines the Wagner Group as “a puppet force of the Russian Department of Defense” and believes that “the activities of the Wagner Group in other countries, including Ukraine, Syria, Sudan and Libya, have created a security threat and incite violence against innocent civilians”;
– in February 2022, it was reported that more than 400 Russian mercenaries from the Wagner group were sent to Kyiv, with orders from the Kremlin to kill President Volodymyr Zelensky and members of the government of Ukraine;
– On March 14, 2022, the current chairman of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Zbigniew Rau, stated that the actions of the Russian government in Ukraine against innocent civilians and civilian infrastructure constitute “state terrorism”;
– March 17 2022, President Volodymyr Zelensky called on the world to recognize the Russian Federation as a terrorist state;
– The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine appealed to Congress calling on the State Department to recognize the Russian Federation as a state sponsor of terrorism, noting that “the Russian Federation has supported and financed terrorist regimes and terrorist organizations for many years, including being the main supplier of weapons to the Assad regime in Syria, and support for terrorists in the Middle East and Latin America, organizing acts of international terrorism, including the poisoning of the Skripal family in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the shooting down of a Malaysian civilian airliner, and other terrorist acts”;
– 27 April 2022, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken told Congress that “I have no doubt that the Russians are terrorizing the Ukrainian people”;
– at the direction of President Putin, the Russian Federation has committed and continues to commit war crimes by directing and authorizing indiscriminate shelling of civilian centers in Chechnya, Georgia, Syria and Ukraine, which has led to the death of countless innocent men, women and children;
– The Russian Armed Forces carried out numerous mass executions of innocent civilians and tried to cover up their atrocities with mass graves throughout Ukraine;
– Responding to questions about the recognition of the Russian Federation as a state sponsor of terrorism, a State Department spokesman said that “we are going to consider all possible options – options available to us under the law, options that will be effective in holding Russia accountable – and if the tool is available and effective, we will not hesitate to use it.”
Introducing the document in May, Senator Graham noted that “Putin is a terrorist and Putin's Russia is one of the most destructive forces on the planet. Putin's Russia deserves that definition… We also make it clear to the Russian people that we are fighting Putin, and as long as he is your leader, you will be isolated on the world stage by engaging in such activities.
A similar bipartisan A resolution calling for the recognition of the Russian Federation as a State Sponsor of Terrorism was submitted on May 12 to the House Foreign Affairs Committee by Republican Congressman Joe Wilson and Democratic Congressman Ted Lew.