Washington, DC – Today, Representative Gregory W. Meeks, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued the following statement on the covert and malign influence operations targeting the American people during the 2020 U.S. elections by Russia, Iran, and other foreign and criminal actors.
“I am deeply concerned by the intelligence community’s findings that Russia, Iran, Cuba, Venezuela, and others attempted to undermine America’s 2020 elections through a range of covert, highly destabilizing, and malign influence operations. Not only does such malicious activity violate United States law, it also undermines the fundamental principles enshrined in the UN Charter to which all these countries have agreed—placing at risk the friendly relations among nations. I condemn in the strongest possible terms these actions that target the heart of American democracy.
“Emboldened by his success in manipulating our 2016 election, Vladimir Putin has only increased his use of influence operations in Europe and elsewhere including here in the United States. Putin has directed cyberattacks and malign influence campaigns using both proxies and Russian intelligence, used chemical weapons against his opponents, and is actively promoting false and misleading narratives about President Biden and other prominent U.S.officials to media outlets and social media.
"Russia is not alone in this effort. The Intelligence Community has found that Iran, led by Supreme Leader Khamenei, has too carried out a multi-pronged covert influence campaign against the United States, including cyberattacks and disinformation campaigns seeking to undermine our election, exacerbate societal tensions, and sow division within our communities and families.
“It is critical that the United States, its allies and partners, and countries around the world stand firmly together with one unified voice in condemnation of these countries’ reprehensible actions. If we do not work together, coordinating our efforts and response, it places the future of our democracies at risk.”