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Engel-Keating Statement on the Trump Administration’s Pending Withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty

Washington—Representatives Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, and William R. Keating, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, Energy, and the Environment, today released the following statement on the Trump Administration’s pending withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty:

“We are fast approaching the United States’ official withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty. At every step of the way, this President has ignored the advice of diplomats, defense experts, and our allies and partners while his notification of U.S. withdrawal from the Treaty flagrantly broke the law that he himself signed. This reckless decision will have negative repercussions for our national security interests at a time when we need to push back against Russian aggression. Instead, the administration is retreating from yet another vital instrument of arms control that has served as a longtime pillar of stability, transparency, and security for the United States and our European allies.

“With this withdrawal, the President is dealing yet another crippling blow to United States interests in Europe and walking away from an agreement involving Russia rather than making concerted attempts to hold Russia accountable for its aggressive behavior. While the President is unfortunately empowered to make this ill-conceived and costly foreign policy decision, not even he is above the law. If the Administration is insistent on making this reckless decision, it should submit its official notice to Congress and wait the requisite 120 days before withdrawing from the Treaty. The American people, and our allies and partners, deserve at least as much.”

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