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The Ripon Advance: Kinzinger's bill would direct federal review of nation's relations with Turkey

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Washington, October 19, 2019 | comments

U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) on Oct. 16 introduced bipartisan legislation authorizing a formal review of relations between the United States and Turkey, specifically to assess whether Turkey has met its duties and obligations with the NATO alliance.

“What’s happening in Northern Syria right now is devastating. We’ve abandoned our Kurdish allies who have sacrificed their lives to fight ISIS, and now [Turkey’s] President Erdogan has unleashed an assault on the Kurdish people — it is reprehensible and inhumane,” Rep. Kinzinger said. “Thank you to my colleagues for joining me as we work to hold the Turkish government accountable for their decision to invade Syria.”

Rep. Kinzinger sponsored the United States-Turkey Relations Review Act of 2019, H.R. 4694, with nine cosponsors, including U.S. Reps. French Hill (R-AR), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Susan Brooks (R-IN), and David Cicilline (D-RI), which would direct the U.S. Secretary of State — in coordination with the Secretary of Defense, Director of National Intelligence, and Secretary of Energy — to conduct the review.

If enacted, H.R. 4694 states that Congress finds that the United States is concerned with the increasing cooperation between President Recep Erdogan and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, and that the U.S. also remains concerned with patterns of anti-democratic behavior by the government of Turkey under Erdogan’s leadership, as well as with the Turkish government’s decision to acquire the S-400 surface-to-air missile system from Russia, according to the bill’s text.

Additionally, the bill includes a statement of policy that the United States will “promote democratic reforms to counter the deteriorating political situation in Turkey; and … encourage NATO member states to protect democratic values, civil rights, and human rights not only globally, but internally and amongst themselves.”

“If Erdogan doesn’t want to act like a leader of a NATO nation, we should not treat him like one,” said Rep. Kinzinger. “Far too many lives have been taken by Assad, Putin, and Khamenei, and the United States should not stand idly by as Erdogan joins this list of murderous thugs.”

The original article can be found on The Ripon Advance website here.
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