tv Federal Officials Testify on Human Rights Violations in Russia CSPAN June 8, 2016 8:00pm-10:10pm EDT
the presiding officer: any members wishing to vote or change their vote? if not, on this vote, the yeas are 93, the nays are 2. three-fifths of the senators duly chose hen and sworn having voted in the affirmative, the motion is agreed to. the presiding officer: the question occurs on the compound motion to go to conference all in favor say aye.
all opposed, no. the ayes appear to have it. the ayes do have it. the motion is agreed to. the senator from florida. mr. nelson: mr. president, i have a motion to instruct conferees at the desk. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. the clerk will report the motion. the clerk: the senator from florida, mr. nelson, moves that the managers on the part of the senate of the conference on the disagreeing votes of the two houses on the senate amendment to the bill h.r. 2577 be instructed to reject proposals that will rescind existing ebola emergency funds. mr. nelson: i had skee ask consent that the reading shall suspended. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. leahy: could we have order, mr. president. could we have order? the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. there will be four minutes equally divided. the senate will be in order. mr. nelson: senators, this is a motion to instruct that
whatever is decided in the conference -- the presiding officer: time will not start until the senate is in order. mr. nelson: mr. president, this is a motion to instruct the conferees that whatever they decide to fund the zika crisis, that the money would not be taken out of the ebola fund and that the money that has been borrowed from the ebola fund would be replenished. remember, when the ebola outbreak was contained a year ago, there have been seven more clusters of outbreak sin that time. -- since that time. and the c.d.c. still employs 80 employees working on ebola, and with the last recent ebola case in guinea, the c.d.c. has had to
vaccinate 1,700 people and then go out and do the infection control over there in west africa in 50 health centers and make 20,000 connections to try to ensure that it does not spread, which of course is the source of how it then -- the ebola -- gets to the u.s. and so this motion is simply to say, let's don't take the zika crisis funds out of ebola and replenish what's already been taken out. thank you, mr. president. mr. tillis: mr. president, we did just vote to go to conference. mr. blunt: i would like to see the conference be able to deal with this issue. in the ebola fund,s three still $1.2 billion left in the ebola fund. mr. roberts: the senate not in order. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order.
mr. blunt: there's $1.2 billion left in the ebola fund. this is $510 million that was to be used for things like reimbursing hospitals that would have had an influx of ebola patients in this country that never happened. d and other issues. the administration has said they do not need this $510 million for ebola. they clearly would like to use it for other purposes, and in fact have used $510 million for other purposes. i'd urge a "no" vote. mr. nelson: is there any time left? the presiding officer: 29 seconds. mr. nelson: mr. president, i would say to my friend from missouri, simply the administration does not say that they don't need this. as a matter of fact, in their $1.9 billion request, they have asked for the replenishment of
this, and the statements that i just made were made from dr. frieden and dr. fauci as early as this morning. mr. blunt: do i have any time left? the presiding officer: one minute. mr. blunt: well, in the $1 .9 billion request, they did not. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. mr. blunt: they would not have asked for this money because they were asking for $1.9 billion of new money. some justified, some not. i believe we've worked hard to get a good start here. this can clearly be an open item in the conference, but i don't think it should be a directed item in the conference. the presiding officer: question is on the motion. is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll. vote:
if not, on this vote the yeas are 46. the nays are 49. under the previous order requiring 60 votes for the adoption of this motion, the motion is not agreed to. the senate will be in order. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alaska. mr. sullivan: i have a motion to instruct the conferees at the desk. the presiding officer: the clerk will report the motion. the clerk: mr. sullivan -- mr. sullivan: i ask consent that the reading of the motion be waived. the clerk: moves to instruct conferees. the presiding officer: the senator is recognized. mr. sullivan: mr. president, this instruction relates to an earlier amendment i had, number 4065. it's a simple amendment that would allow states and communities throughout our nation the ability to expedite
the permitting process -- the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. mr. sullivan: -- to expedite the permitting process in construction of their bridges that pose safety to their citizens. this would only apply to bridges that are built in the same place, so not expanding bridges. same size and bridges that they're replacing. essentially maintenance on bridges. and if state environmental agencies determine that federal requirements, permitting requirements should be waived, then they're allowed to do this to expedite the permitting of the bridge. let me explain why this is important, mr. president. right now in america, there are 61,000 structurally deficient bridges in need of repair, and yet when we try to repair these bridges, it takes five to six years just to get the federal permitting requirements.
this bridge -- this amendment -- these instructions would allow this process to move much more quickly. it will be important for the safety of our citizens to put americans back to work and to grow our economy. it's a commonsense instruction. i know my colleagues on both sides of the aisle are focused on permitting reform. this is something very simple that we can do that will benefit all of our states and all of our citizens. mrs. boxer: mr. president? mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from california. mrs. boxer: mr. president, the senate is not in order. the presiding officer: the senate will be in order. the senator from california. mrs. boxer: mr. president, i would so appreciate order because i have laryngitis which is the dream of my friends on the other side of the aisle. but i want to say that the sullivan amendment is dangerous and it is unnecessary and is the
last thing we should do given the lessons that we've learned from flint, michigan. because what the sullivan amendment says is you can be exempted from nine health and safety laws, federal health and safety laws when you rebuild a bridge. so, for example, it would allow the dumping of oil, toxic materials that could include lead, construction debris. and that all will go in the water, water that we swim in, water that we fish in, water that we drink. after flint, how could we do this? and this is not a problem if you ask senator klobuchar -- i just talked to her -- senator franken, they rebuilt their bridge in a year because there's already expedited language in all of the laws that we worked together on. so please reject this. it's dangerous and it's unnecessary, and it certainly is unrelated to the underlying bill. mr. sullivan: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alaska you have 15
seconds. mr. sullivan: i yield to my colleague from maine. mr. king: in 15 seconds i yield to no one here in my commitment to the environment but i also have a commitment to common sense. we're talking about bridges not kpapbgd, same -- expanding. this amendment has a safety valve that the construction and reinstruction or maintenance of the bridge must pass muster with the state level permitting environmental protection authority. i think it's tkurbs. the presiding officer: the senator's time has expired. mr. king: i think i should support it, thank you. mrs. boxer: do i have any time remaining? the presiding officer: you have 55 seconds. mrs. boxer: wow. in the beginning god created -- i want to say to my friend, senator king, ask the people of flint, michigan how happy they were that the state took over the health and safety rules. their kids are suffering from
lead poisoning. sometimes you're talking about bridges that are 100 years old. they contain toxic materials. again, this is not necessary. we haven't got a problem because we've taken care of expedited procedures. my arm was twisted on it in the fast act. so let's reject this because we want to protect the health and safety of the people that we represent. thank you very much. i urge a "no" vote. the presiding officer: the question is on the motion. is there a sufficient second? there appears to be. the clerk will call the roll.
adoption of this motion, the motion is not agreed to. the chair appoints the following as conferees on the part of the senate on the disagreeing votes of the two houses with respect to h.r. 2577. the clerk: senators collins, kirk, mcconnell, mccloskey, capito, cochran, blunt, graham, tester, murray, reed, udall, schatz, baldwin, murphy, mikulski and leahy. mr. mcconnell: mr. president? the presiding officer: the majority leader. mr. mcconnell: i send a
cloture motion to the desk for s. 2943. the presiding officer: the clerk will report the cloture motion. the clerk: cloture motion. we, the undersigned senators, in accordance with the provisions of rule 22 of the standing rules of the senate, do hereby move to bring to a close debate on calendar number 469, s. 2943, a bill to authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2017 for military activities of the department of defense for military construction and for defense activities of the department of energy to prescribe military personnel strengths for such fiscal year and for other purposes, signed pie 17 -- by 17 senators as follows. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the reading of the names be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent to waive the mandatory quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent the senate be in a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today, it adjourn until 9:30 tomorrow, thursday, june 9. following the prayer and pledge, the morning business be deemed
expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date and the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day. further, that following leader remarks, the senate resume consideration of s. 2943. finally, that notwithstanding the provisions of rule 22, the cloture motions with respect to the reed amendment number 4549 and the mccain amendment 4229 ripen at 11:15 a.m. tomorrow. the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection, so ordered. mr. mcconnell: so if there is no further business to come before the senate, i ask that it stand adjourned following the remarks of senator mccain. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mccain: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from arizona. mr. mccain: mr. president, i would just like to make a couple of comments about the progress of the legislation. as it just happened, the majority leader has filed cloture on the bill, which means
that if 30 hours are consumed, then we would be here on friday. i certainly hope that that's not the case. we are negotiating several contentious issues, which if those negotiations are successful, i would anticipate a number of votes tomorrow morning. if we are unable to, then it's going to stretch out into the afternoon or even to the next day for final passage. so i want to thank every member who has been engaged in literal ly -- and literally every member has had an amendment or some involvement in this issue, and i think that's the healthiest thing about this -- consideration of this bill, which obviously i say with some bias is the most important legislation that we take up, given that its responsibilities
are to the men and women who are serving in our military in harm's way in a very dangerous world. so i thank a lot of my colleagues for their cooperation and hopefully we can reach some agreements tonight and tomorrow to expedite the process and get it to final passage. mr. president, i note the presence of the gentleman from rhode island, and i wonder if he has any comments. mr. reed: mr. chairman, let me first -- the presiding officer: without objection. mr. reed: thank you very much, mr. president. mr. chairman, let me second your comments about the cooperation and the collaboration. we hope tomorrow we can move forward on several amendments, and i want to join you in commending and thanking our colleagues for their help. thank you, mr. chairman. mr. president.
>> and it has ben a stage the senators had been acting on the stage comedy audience is in the gallery, and by our action today we have fundamentally offered -- a large that situation to a larger galleries pushing a bill walls all the people that wish to watch 41 students presented with the wards in front of classmates teachers parents and local elected officials with 14 winning videos when including the documentary titled driving forward.
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for most of modern history americans and russians have found themselves throughout the cold war we trying to obliterate each other but the fall of the berlin wall many politicians argue the difficult confrontation in which-- were behind us. gorbachev was on a path to democracy on peaceful engagement reagan asked for the wall to be torn down to his home in obama thought you reset the relationship to prioritize communication they would argue with the relationships but that russia georgia war in the
beginning of the new age. the book called resurgent russia pushing back on the institutions and allies of the west. in wheys they provide their integration. into the european union and the north atlantic treaty alliance russia is acting contrary to the forces treaty the new strategic arms reduction treaty the open sky a is a treaty in the open seas agreement. dash to beg questions about future governments not just in moscow but across the federation with the civil war in syria to militarize but now when we talk about u.s.-russian relationship scum of the way that we interact in a globally following the cold war
seemed very far away precocial has we meet today to talk to help the role that russia has claimed in the last several years we must address these topics through the lens of realism. it is easy to catalog the events that have broad as to where we are today but we are charged with a higher responsibility when italy to diagnose the problem but begin generating prescriptions to rigo next discussions must be paired with conversations about ways to set boundaries engaged with russia to make our world were stable in to serve national interest heart countries are too powerful house and to pour in to resign ourselves to the increasing risk of confrontation which and desolation island for urge you hearing and we can recognize the new reality of the russian relationship and
implemented new strategy of a better trajectory when that i will turn to our distinguished ranking member hospitals first thanks for calling the hearing and let we concur with all of your comments from the opening statement i totally agree with the points you raised in the challenges that we have in relationship to russia. today we discussed how russia's efforts to undermine institutions that have maintained peace and security in europe since the end of the cold war procopius russia's actions in georgia in 2008 for separation misheard actions of local the invasion of ukraine who illegal annexation of crimea and with the russian separationist forces have challenged the security of sovereign borders something that has been a mainstream of relations in europe since signing the helsinki accord in 1975 we have serious
concerns about russia's compliance with the arms control treaties and in the stamp which russia complies with trees it is in violation of others like the imf and their compliance issues and the open skies treaty is my concerns we're looking forward to going to strengthen the ability to verify their terms there are legitimate questions of the value of such accords as it disregards its international commitments which should not lead us to the conclusion that all arms control agreements although not perfect episode visibility into their intentions also to underscore the importance of these treaties to our allies especially hope this guy says he bolster unity in the face of oppression to pull out of those guys ha ha but what is often lost in the debate of their negative
behavior abroad is how they treat their own people have home the recent murder just steps from the kremlin is the most disturbing example facing the opposition today we're honored to be joined by a prominent member of the joint opposition from moscow for under suspicious circumstances spend months thank you for your courage when and all that you do for the people of the russian federation new laws targeting foreign agents when ngos as traders of the russian state and the macarthur foundation putin has fuelled corruption by weakening and associates know their fortunes depend on access said allegiance to the regime otherwise they are threatened and abuse or
assistant secretary of state for eurasian affairs to be here and dr. michael carpenter from ya shut its ukraine and eurasia you can summarize and about five minutes we have your written testimony and we look forward to your questions that follow but if you start that would be great. >> thank you chairman and ranking member for the opportunity to join and discuss the challenges posed to international peace and security and the administration's policy towards moscow as you know, for more than 20 years following the collapse of the soviet union united states has sought to build a constructive relationship with russia to support that greater integration to global institutions with the rules based international order the assumption was
that a more integrated democratic and prosperous russia would be a safer and more predictable and a willing partner for united states and arab allies. by 2014 we had no choice but to reevaluate our assumptions following russia's invasion of sovereign ukrainian territory first crimea then eastern ukraine which shattered any remaining illusions about this kremlins willingness to abide by international law or lived by the rules of the institutions that russia joined at the end of the cold war our approach today speaks first to deter further aggression through strength in unity with the allies second to build resilience and reduce vulnerability for friends and allies facing pressure and coercion. and to lou cooperate on priorities when our interest
and russia's do a line and to sustain to the russian people to preserve for a more constructive relationship in the future and i will go through these. first straight and deterrence to counter the russian aggression in the military moves against territory over the past two years united states and allies have maintained a persistent rotational military presence on land and sea and air all along the eastern edge of the baltic states as we look toward the nato summit in warsaw allies will institutionalize a more sustained approach to the deterrence including enhancing the presence in the east to reduce response time to any aggression. to support this commitment the president has requested 3.$4 billion to fund the european reinsurance initiative and with your support these funds will be
used to central and eastern europe and with additional traders and to bring an end to the ukraine with the commitment under the agreements we have the e.u. and. >>host: and other nations to oppose successive rounds of tough sanctions on russia over the past two years we're now working with europe to ensure that the sanctions are rolled over and the end of the month to support friends in germany and believe diplomatic role for the full implementation of the minsk agreements with the return of the sovereign border. next even as we defend nato territory we are working to reduce the vulnerabilities and increase the resilience
of those countries across europe to that face pressure from moscow to help ukraine united states has committed over $600 million of security assistance training conventional forces and national guard personnel providing artillery on overt secure radios and other equipment to help troops successfully resist further evidence is and to save lives to continue our work to strengthen democratic institutions like corruption to build the resilience of our partners, we have requested $787 million in fiscal year 17 focusing on our priorities on those countries that our most tolerable to russian pressure our programs and advisers focus on governance to squeeze out fraud to strengthening justice
systems to improve election standards to harding border security and building energy independence to make countries more resilient and stronger in the face of pressure also deepening intelligence cooperation across europe and eurasia us to blunt their covert and overt efforts to manipulate the internal politics of the european countries. even as we push back against russian aggression united states will continue to look for areas where our interest with moscow lines we have worked with russia with chemical weapons to prevent iran from acquiring nuclear weapons that contain a nuclear threat and to negotiate and implement the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty as you know, over the past eight months secretary kerry has led multilateral efforts to resolve the crisis is in syria to establish
international serious support group with a critical support group which has reduced to violence even if that is tested every single day these efforts have all required hard-headed diplomacy with russia to continue to call on the kremlin to prevent civilian casualties' and to end a the pharao bombing with the humanitarian aid deliveries and finally we must engage directly with those russians and individuals and organizations who want to work with us and share our interest and i use for a better country for their future. despite the civil society and free press our exchange program and corporation remains hugely popular with the russian people will also continue to speak out against laws and policies that impede the work of the
russian civil society of those fundamental rights of assembly and association and elsewhere in the region the approach i have outlined is not without challenges and contradiction i will not claim it has yet brought an end to russian aggression or the unmitigated support with the saudi regime were violations of treaties however i am convinced that unity regarding russia has been essential to deterring even worse behavior for our security to bring the kremlin to the table on critical issues. thanks for your attention. >> chairman and ranking members members of the committee i appreciate the opportunity to update you on department of defense strong and balanced approach to deterring russian aggression
defending their homeland and strengthening their resilience of our allies and partners to russian coercion and intimidation. has demonstrated a blatant disregard for international commitments including the most basic principle principles of international order including sovereign tree -- sovereignty of the borders. . .
>> thanks to robust military modernization program, russia seeking to qualitative if not quantitative pier to the united states acrossland, see, air and space domains in addition to cyberspace and electromagnetic spectrum. our approach to countering russian incursion and aggression to strength err our capabilities posture, investments plans. we aim to do this without foreclosing possibility of working with russia when it is in our interests the most critical element is insuring effective deterrents, our most vital mission, defense of the homeland which is reflected in the president's 583 billion, fiscal 11 budget request. a new long-range strategic
bomber, new cruise missile and life extension program for the new b-61 gravity bomb. we're moving forward developing new technologies to maintain a qualitative military edge over potential high-end adversaries. these include new umanned systems enhanced frowned and air civil defenses, long-range antiship weapons and innovative qualities like electromagnetic railgun, lasers, new systems for electronic warfare, space, and cyberspace. we will also continue to strength our alliances and partnerships. i thank congress for continued support of european reassures initiative as secretary nuland talked about since 2014. it strength err our deterrents and assurance missions in europe. president's fist 2017 budget
tripling funding for $3.4 billion to increase force posture in europe augmenting two permanently stationed brigade combat teams with additional armored bct and a fourth bct of prepositioned war fighting equipment. with our non-nato partners our goal to improve their capabilities and capacity to deal with conventional and unconventional threats. in ukraine we have provided over $600 million to enhance security since the start of the crisis. our support has consisted of training programs, to enhance ukraine's internal defense capabilities, equipment to support the operational needs of its security forces, and advisors to advance the implementation of key defense reforms. so far we have intrad sixp companies from ukraine's national guard and five land forces battalions, rather in the process of training five land forces battalions and one special operations battalion. while the scale of our assistance to ukraine is unique we are engaged in similar
capacity building efforts with other non-nato partners such as georgia and moldova. as secretary carter has underscored the department's policy towards russia is predicated on strategic approach both strong and balanced leaving the door open to russia to turn return to compliance winter national norms and constructive engagement with the international community. meantime in concert with our allies and partners we'll continue countering russian incursion and aggression with a proportional. we'll continueadvance our strategic vision after europe free, whole and in peace. i thank very much looking forward to your questions. >> we have votes at 4:00. we have two panels. five minutes on the clock and everybody try to stay within that. i will ask one question and move on to ben. secretary nuland, we met briefly prior to this hearing. there is a narrative out there that the u.s. and nato pressured russia by expanding to areas
obviously adjacent to their border and that is what has generated some of the discord if you will that exists between our countries. you were involved in the negotiations extensively. give us a brief summary of your view of that. >> thank you, senator. i completely reject this narrative of grievance that it somehow our fault. as you donate toe is a defensive alliance as we said to russia every stage of expansionist the nato we're not a threat to russia in any way. through various he can pans shuns of nato we sought to deepen nato's own relationship with russia, first with the creation of permanent joint council and nato russia council. i was active in those efforts negotiating and ambassador to nato to try to implement those agreements. i frankly think russia did not
take the opportunity -- advantage of the opportunity nato put before it for corruption. we could have gotten to a different place and attitude within the kremlin where much of the affirmative security we were seeking in europe and seeking against terrorists with regard to dangerous iranian behavior could have been done jointly in that structure but we could never get there because of old efforts. also in the ought years we reached out to russia, the u.s. did, to work together on missile defense problems and try to cooperate and the kremlin was never willing or able to take us up on those opportunities. so i regret very much we are where we are but i do really think that we tried very hard on the u.s. side across three administrations of both parties to reach out and we will continue to try to do that as i said. >> thank you. i'm going to reserve the rest of my time for interjections and turn to our ranking member. >> thank you, mr. chairman. to defend ourselves from
russia's behavior and aggression, would be nice to know why they're doing what they're doing. since 2008 they have used their military in an aggressive way to violate the sovereignty of other countries. so, can you just share with me your thoughts what russia's fame is here? are they trying to get a greater russia? trying to take on more territory under the umbrella of russia? are they trying to recreate the soviet union? what is their gameplan here? >> senator card inch, i would -- cardin, as a u.s. official i don't think it is particularly productive to try to speak for russia but i would highlight some of the things russia's president himself has said. i point to his speech at the munich security conference in 2007 where very much regretted the loss of control over soviet space, the loss of control over the failure, the end of the soviet union, et cetera. so clearly that's something on
his mind but i would defer that question to russians frankly. >> let me, it is not safe to be in the political opposition these days in russia. what is the administration doing to help political pluralism in russia with regard to those opposing the putin regime. >> i assume that is for me, senator? >> either one. i'm open to a good answer. >> obviously we continue to speak out strongly whenever russia takes moves to further constrain the space for the non-governmental organizations to restrict human rights of the as i said in my opening. to constrain press freedom. we worked with vladimir and others who are seeking a different future for russia. we have programs both inside of russia and outside of russia to work with those russian activist who want to work with us to try to strengthen rule of law.
to try to strengthen a free press. we have a large number of russian journalists who actually fled russia now, who are working with us and with others in europe to try to insure there is independent russian language news inside, going back into the country. we also work on lgbt rights and other things inside of russia with those who want to work with us. >> i will follow up with questions for the record with regard to this. let me move to the arctic for one moment. climate change is changing the arctic with the ice melts. russia has 4,000 miles of arctic coastline. it is my understanding they have established six new bases in the north of the arctic circle and they have deployed certain weapon systems there. what are we doing to respond to russia's militarization of the arctic? >> well, you're absolutely right, ranking member cardin, that russia has invested
significantly in capabilities in the arctic over the last several years, including trying to create infrastructure in places like other parts of the russian arctic. we seek to preserve the act tick as a space for cooperation on scientific issues as we have, in fact with russia in the past, working on things like black carbon and danger it poses to the arctic environment as well as other issues. however we take very seriously russia's advancing capabilities in the arctic, including possibility over time russia will be able to create in the act ticklements of area access, area, a-2-ad bubbles if you will, that will preclude other nations from other nations being able to enjoy their freedom of navigation in parts of arctic. we are investing in the president's fiscal year 2017 budget invests in the types of capabilities that will allow us
to augment our force posture in the arctic and also develop the sorts of capabilities that will help us insure freedom of navigation and freedom of flight for our, for our troops in that region. >> i take it we're working with our other arctic partners to try to minimize the potential here of conflict but it does seem like russia is investing an awful lot in territorial claims in the arctic? >> well, senator, we do have a good working relationship with russia in the arctic council where we try to preserve, as i said, those areas of cooperation that are ongoing including environmental cooperation, but also importantly, our coast guard has a search-and-rescue agreement with its russian counterpart that has worked very successfully over the years. so we seek to preserve these areas of cooperation but at the
same time, develop our own military capabilities so that we are not caught off-guard. so that we are keeping track with the type of invests that russia is making. >> thank you. i will be respectful of chairman's five-minute clock but i will be asking other questions for the record including russia's aggressiveness in revising history and using its communications to try to change the narrative of the, what is reality and how we're trying to counter that. propaganda can have a pretty strong impact and part of our strategies must be to make sure people understand what are the facts and i would welcome your response to the record in regards to those issues. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. senator perdue. >> thank you, mr. chairman, with the debt crisis we got and popularity of your hearings we might start charging tickets here. in all seriousness though i really thank you for. i hope we will have many more like this about russia and china.
the rise of these traditional rivals are really concerning to people back home. russia, i would like to talk to dr. carpenter on russia. i have a second follow-up on hybrid warfare. i want to talk about georgia. i want to know what lessons we've learned after eight years? the russians have history of creating frozen conflicts without a peace treaty everything seems to be going normal and i know next year in one of their regions, chavali, having referendum joining russia again. this is pressure russia keeps putting on there and i'm very concerned. james clapper, director of dni, national intelligence the nation of georgia despite progress on western nations and reforms is increasing risk from russian aggression and pressure. i visited serbia last year and met the georgian defense minister, tina kitalshi, and
heard her concerns about ongoing pressure in georgia. what lessons have we learned in terms of standing up? i know georgia in the u.s., national guard had a forward deployment there. i would like to get some feedback on that. is also what are we doing from a dod standpoint to put pressure on russia relative to georgia and what lessons, assistant secretary nuland, what have we learned there relative to crimea and the ukraine? >> well, thank you, senator, and i completely agree with your assessment that russia is continuing to place pressure on georgia through variety of different means. russia currently occupies about 20% of georgia territory and settia. >> a third of the population, right? >> it's a significant portion of the population. those administrative boundary lines that russia maintains
continue to shift especially in the south settia region, claiming every more pieces increments of georgian territory. russia is putting pressure on georgia in variety of other ways including this proclaimed desire by the leader, defacto leader to have a referendum on integration with russia. our goal since the russian invasion of georgia in 2008 to build russia's resilience and reduce its vulnerabilities to russian coercion. we spent $480 million on security assistance in georgia since the crisis. just recently two weeks ago i was in tbilisi to participate in the noble partner exercise we conduct with georgia where we had about the 650 u.s. troops alongside about 500 georgian troops and about 150 u.k. troops where we had airborne jumps into georgia and we had abrams tanks
as well as bradley infantry fighting vehicles on the ground, helping them to develop their self-defense capabilities. over the course of the last 10 years, georgia has contributed mightily to our nato efforts overseas, including especially in afghanistan where up until recently they have been the second largest troop contributor after the united states with 850 troops and in fact they have suffered about 32 casualties if i'm not mistaken, about 282 wounded. they have had major sacrifices there. a lot of our training program over the course of the last decade has been focused on preparing georgian troops for these overseas deployments including iraq and later afghanistan. now, we are starting to position ourselves to devote more attention to training up georgia's troops for their self-defense capabilities. >> do we have permanent troops on the ground in georgia? >> we don't plan to have permanent troops on the ground
but we do plan to increase the tempo of our exercises an trainings with georgia. >> what lesson have we learned relative to georgia as it relates to crimea and the ukraine? >> senator, i think the first one is the one that dr. carpenter highlighted which we in our security partnership with georgia spent at that lot of the last decade helping georgian forces prepare for expeditionary deployments to afghanistan, et cetera, probably not enough focus on strengthening georgia's own homeland security which what we're trying to correct, not just as, u.s.-georgia relations but in nato-georgian relations. the other lesson is the abiding one which has significant applicability for ukraine which the best antidote to russian pressure is successful, increasingly european, democratic georgia or ukraine and to take maximum advantage of the association agreements that both of these countries have with europe.
so that's why all of the programs that we manage from the state department are designed to squeeze out corruption and improve justice -- >> with due respect, i have all the respect for you, assistant secretary. i watched you, i'm sorry, i'm over time, i walk away, i've been over there quite a bit and i walk away with the feeling when we deal with russia and ukraine, we deal with russia and georgia, i don't mean to belittle this but sounds like it's their fault, it is ukraine, crimea, it is georgia's fault because they aren't quite as western we want them to be, therefore we haven't been able to do everything we need to help them. i know we have corruption issues in ukraine, we have westernization issues in georgia but we have an invasion occurred in sovereign territory possessed in violation of a 1972 agreement with russia. we're talking about all this other stuff at the same level of the invasion issue. so i'm sorry to take issue with that but i really think -- >> no question, we can not blame
the victim, i agree completely senator. we have to strengthen the countries so they can resist economically and politically in security terms. >> thank you. senator coons. >> thank you, mr. chairman. secretary nuland i had a opportunity to meet with the russian ambassador to the united nations earlier this year and he referenced difficult balance we try to strike between cooperating with the russians on number of important areas. some of our bilateral treaties containing iran's aggressive nuclear weapons program and other areas where clearly we have strongly discordant interests where we're working to strengthen our allies whether in the ball i can its or ukraine or nato in the face of russian aggression. i came away from meeting with ambassador cherkin they will do everything they can to protect iran and ballistic missile launches from action by the security council. am i wrong? what leverage do we have to sustain russian engagement in concerted effort to put pressure
on iran to stop some of its activities outside the jcpoa that are really destructive to iran's intentions or expressed desire to rejoin the community of nations? >> senator, i think you're not wrong in your assessment, russia only joined us in joint work against a nuclear threat from iran. having worked with russia over many decades to try to encourage them to understand that that nuclear threat was a threat to russia too, i would say that is the number one trajectory we have to work with regard to the missile threat now, that russia shouldn't be so secure in its, in its confidence that it couldn't be on the other end of said missiles. therefore it has an interest in limiting or stopping iran's missile program. that is where we have to work and we're continuing to try. >> i would be interested, dr. carpenter, as well, hearing whether in your view the european reassures initiative is genuinely working. whether our allies in the
baltics are confident in our commitment to their security. what else do you think we here in congress can and should be doing to "spro" vied support across a whole range of areas of engagement as the senator mentioned. there are frozen conflicts in georgia and moldova and for time being in the ukraine. my hope, and you worked very hard that the allies will continue advancing sanctions and continuing to engage with us. what more can we do to strengthen our baltic allies? >> thank you for that question, senator. i think the eri is working well. when we i think begin to implement the 2017 requested portions of eri, we will be dramatically increasing our force posture on the eastern flank of the alliance which will have a significant deterrent impact on russia. it will also at the same time assure our allies that we have force posture, that we have genuine, high quality, high-end war fighting equipment in place as necessary in event of a crisis.
i think other piece to this, we can not neglect working with nato allies to assure they also have skin in the game. as we talk about augmenting nato's presence in these countries, a lot of what we're doing under eri is bilaterally with each of these allies in the east. but as we talk about increasing nato's footprint. i think we'll be in better place to have other allies with skin in the fame as i said. and additional assets they bring to bear which they uniquely possess because of their proximity to some of these countries that will greatly aid in deterring russia in case it thinks about potential aggressive action in any one of these countries. >> assistant secretary nuland, my last question as we look forward to the nato summit, have we done everything we need to brace up, shore up and fully engage the nato allies to provide deterrent impact so we have a chance at meaningful diplomacy? how do you assess putin's
willingness to engage in rational diplomacy around the ukraine conflict? >> two good questions. just to add to what doctor carpenter said, on the baltic states, two pieces here. as i said in the opening we over the past two years had sort of an ad hoc approach to put a patchwork together of land, sea and air presence in the baltic. what you will see at the warsaw summit is a sustained approach. so that these allies can be confident that they will have regular, persistent support and to make that much more routine and normal to create, joint headquarters in all of these countries and to insure we can get there. the other piece on the baltics i think deserves highlighting, we worked on the spectrum of their resilience. not just hard military but also border security, integrated communications across domestic agencies, et cetera. we've had a homeland security folks out there.
we really made pretty good progress but we need other allies to be as vigorous and rigorous in their support and we're working on that when we head towards warsaw. with regard to russia's readiness, willingness to negotiate with regard to ukraine, there is an agreement on the table, as you know. the minutes being agreements which -- minsk agreements that call for full sees fire across eastern ukraine. a political package of decentralization for people of danbas and withdrawal of weapons. so the french and germans have taken the lead to try to see namely meanted. we have in the last month 1/2 greatly increased role the u.s. is playing in parallel are working with kiev and moscow. the our concern where we're making some progress now on the political package for the donbsa
we have not made the progress we need to see on the security piece and we'll have to do a lot more to push russia and separatist its to end violence to allow the osed in fully. >> thank you. mr. kara-murza, thank you for willingness to testify today. >> senator barrasso. >> thank you, mr. chairman. secretary nuland, good to see you again. i want to talk about intermediate range nuclear forces treaty. russia is violating the nif treaty for quite some time. it was made official in public in 2014. in response to questioning on matter the administration is exploring economic countermeasures in response to the violation. in president's speech back in april of 2009 in prague he committed to ridding the world of nuclear weapons. he said in order for non-proliferation regime to work he said, violations must be punished and then he said words must mean something. this is president obama, words must mean something. this administration has now said for years that they're considering economic sanctions against russia, for its
violation of the imf treat at this time. is russia still in violation of that treaty and when is the administration finally going to get around to punishing this violation of the treaty? >> thank you, senator barrasso. dr. barrasso i like to call you. as you have said, we have found russian violation over the last go years. we are engaged in discussions negotiations with russia to try to bring them back into the compliance. we are also working with allies to bring pressure to bear on russia with regard to the violations. we also working intensively, this is part of our package for the warsaw summit, to insure that nato's own deterrent, including its nuclear deterrent, is updated and strong. we are, and this is a about all i can say at this point in an open hearing. we are reviewing and working on a full range of options, a full range of options.
to make sure that russia can not gain any significant military advantage from any system that they might develop outside of the treaty. and we are also investing in the u.s. technologies that are designed to deter and defeat any russian provocations but i think going further than that we would have to be in another setting. >> in that line of thought what we could do, open skies treaty, according to the state department reports on arms control compliance, russia is failing to meet obligations on the open skies treaty. restricting access to some of its territories. it has shown repeated pattern of violating arms control agreements armed nuclear forces, open skies commission for permission to use more powerful collection capabilities on flight over the united states. to me it says that u.s. shouldn't be approving such a request for these upcoming,
these, requested censors. make it contingent upon russia first coming into full compliance with open skies treaty and imf treaty and interested in your thoughts on that? >> you're not wrong, russia is restricting some overflights. there is a list of places, low altitude over moscow, et cetera where they have been restricting open skies flights. they had been restricting open skies flights over chechnya in the last couple of weeks. they have reopened that territory in part due to the pressure we have been able to bring to bear from other open skies treaty partners, particularly the europeans who highly value this i think you know that the first round of russian requests for higher definition cameras were within the constraints of the treaty, and so, from that perspective, were we were unilaterally restrict those flights, we could
just expect they would do the same to us. that would make us less capable ourselves, with regard to their more recent requests for really, potent visuals we are still reviewing that internally. i don't know if dr. carpenter has anything to add on that. we can certainly brief you in a closed setting as well. >> doctor? >> i would just add that, to answer your question, senator, that yes, russia is in violation of its inf treaty requirements not to produce or deploy ground cruise missile between 5,000 and 500 kilometers. we're looking at a range of, we're looking at this more broadly in the context of russia's aggressive behavior. so we're taking a number of steps that are being taken in that broader context to include expanding and modifying air defense systems together with our allies. we're also looking at investments together with our
allies and partners in advanced capabilities that will allow to us defend against complex cruise missile threats. on the open skies issue i would associate myself with everything that assistant secretary nuland has said. the treaty process already provides a way forward for certification of the electro optical camera being used as films go out of business essentially. and so our ability to use this same sensor down the road is impacted by the decisions that we take today. >> follow up, in terms of security risks, secretary nuland, you said you want to take additional security risks to our country on this. are there additional security risks and vulnerabilities if these new types of sensors are allowed on open skies aircrafts for us? >> senator, i'm comfortable with the decisions we already made. we're reviewing exactly this set of issues as we look at the next set of requests from russia. >> thank you.
thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much. senator menendez. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam secretary, for some context to my question, let me summarize the current events as i see it. as russia september 18th primary parcel men temporary election draws close, the kremlin preparing groundwork of another victory of putin's united russia party. the current duma, the product of a fraudulent 2011 election has rubberstamped a slate of new last targeting electoral process, impeding campaigning authorization and authorizing police forces to open fire on protesters. the state-sponsored ballot stuffing that sparked those moscow protests in 2011 is now evolved. the kremlin and duma are instead borrowing opposition from registering now -- barring. pro-government vigilantes set up attacks on opposition. putin himself is repeatedly implicated in political assassinations, assassination
attempts as with boris, shot outside of the kremlin, dead outside of the kremlin or mr. kara-murza, witness here, poisoned near to death. the flames of nationalism are burning as bright as putin's imperial adventures seem to be part after campaign to russia great again. whether in ukraine with exception of congressional sanctions i and others helped author and passed through this committee and congress passed in 2014 the administration has done relatively little to hold russia accountable in meaningful, material ways or in syria where we have maneuvered have being to coordinate with russian forces who neither share common interests, nor pursue common goals while hundreds of thousands of died and millions have been displaced. or at the u.n. where they resist
sanctions on iran from missile violations in violation of u.n. security council resolution which they supported. or their violation of the inf treaty two years we have discussions but no consequences. so i worry that the message putin must be taking from our responses his limit testing aggression, and opportunism is the right approach, particularly when there are relatively negligible consequences at the end of the day for all of the things that i have listed, among others. and this is certainly a dry run for the presidential 2018 presidential elections in russia where we certainly expect putin to take advantage of opportunities he sees, whether that is the arbitrary violation of international borders treaties, human rights compacts or whatever he decides that suits his personal interests at the time. so i'm trying to get a grasp of,
we pushed ukrainians really hard to meet their four pillars which you testify here very hard but on the security side in the minsk agreement we failed dramatically but we keep pushing the ukrainians. we don't talk about crimea anymore. that is i guess gone. we have this violation of the inf treaty yet no consequences two years later, despite whatever engagement conversations are to bring them back. why aren't we more aggressively engaging in tools of diplomacy that can help us hopefully have russia understand there are consequences? why aren't we using osce, which clearly they are a signatory to and have clear violations? why aren't we looking at more visa denials? why aren't we looking at more freezen accounts? why aren't we looking at more listings? i don't get it. because if everything, what you're doing, and i heard your
testimony, i read it before i came in. i wanted to listen to it again, is still leaving you in the place that we're at, why is it that we don't seem to step up towards the challenge that we have? >> senator, i would not take issue with anything that you have said here with regard to the constraining of space inside of russia and ramp up to the elections and russian external behavior. i would take issue with whether russia is paying a price for this. we talked about the economic sanctions that this committee has supported over the last two years. i think russia has paid a steep price, not simply through sanctions but also through its overdependence on oil. we now have russians 13.4% of russians living below the poverty line. gdp contraction of 3.7% in russia in 2015. >> i have 18 seconds. why not, answer my core question.
why not more visa denials? why not more magnitsky listings and using u.s. banks as more witnesses said, don't let ill-gotten gains of his cronies end up in the united states? why aren't we pursuing all those osce? why aren't we doing that? >> we're working on all of those things as you know we add names to the magnitsky list. the list is relatively constraining. it has to go to that particular case. but we have denied a number of visas in ukraine sanctions and we're looking what more we can and should do. >> senator gardner. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, both of you for being here today. i want to follow up on senator menendez talked about, that is consequences of bad behavior. this past week a number of us had the opportunity to visit southeast asia where we visited with with ministers from myanmar, new leadership in
taiwan and shangri-la dialogue where we participated with leaders around the world in the defense dialogue and including our own secretary of defense ash carter. when meeting with foreign governments, when meeting with leaders, they talk about u.s. leadership and talk about the positions that we are trying to secure, positions we're fighting for, like the south china seas. when we're asking them to take a tough line, perhaps something like the south china sea, they see our lack of consequences in other circumstances and question whether or not they should take a hard-line position against a powerful nation or a situation such as their neighbor, klein. and so we can't look at things in isolation as how we are responding to russia, because it affects what is happening and on people's minds in asia, southeast asia, excuse me. in singapore. people around the globe are looking at our lack of response and lack of consequence, in deciding whether or not the u.s. is somebody that they should
hitch their wagon to so to speak and or not. i think that is the great challenge. whether crimea, ukraine, inf, syria, georgia, they don't see the consequences. when we ask them to take a tough position, they don't see the reason why they should because they know the united states is not going to follow through. and that's hurting our leadership around the globe. and it's hurting our ability to rally our allies to our side and to create the kind of rules-based order that we need to in order to counter the behavior of china, the behavior of russia. and so i guess a couple questions. in your testimony you state that quote, we have worked with russia to remove syria's declared chemical weapons, to prevent iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, to contain the nuclear threat eminating from the dprk, north korea and to negotiate and implement the new s.t.a.r.t. treaty. obviously i think you would agree the nuclear threat in north korea has not been contained is that correct? >> it has not. >> so what is it that we're
actually getting russia to accomplish? are they following through with implementation of united nations resolutions 2270, the sanctions bill against north korea? >> as you know in the context of this latest round of sanctions we had difficult conversations with russia but he were able to get russia to join a deeper regime against north korea than we have had in the past. we will, and they had particular interests they wanted managed there. but we did better than some expected because of the pressure from the asian allies. >> are they completely implementing 2270? >> i frankly don't have the details. my understanding is that in the broad strokes they are. whether they are in detail i would have to do more work. >> what is their position on thad in south korea? dr. carpenter, if that is more appropriate to you. >> russia has traditionally
opposed the advanced air defense capabilities that we provide to allies both in europe and east asia. >> what is their position? say if they're teaming up with china on thad and our efforts to contain the nuclear threat in north korea, what are they doing in other areas? teaming up with china on freedom of navigations operations as well and opposing our efforts to provide rules based governance according to international law? >> short, i don't see them teaming up with china on freedom of navigation although clearly the chinese and other great powers are watching to see what russia is able to get away with. >> russia recorded our operations in south china sea, have they. >> has russia supported our -- >> correct. >> no. >> they're taking same position on china of freedom of navigation operations? >> senator, i would characterize it as they have not taken a