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Washington, D.C. – Today, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) wrote President Trump requesting that the administration review whether Russia should be subject to sanctions contained in the Chemical and Biological Weapons and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 following the poisoning of two British citizens. 

Royce writes: “It is critical that we both support our allies in countering these brazen Russian attacks and act consistently to uphold chemical weapons bans put in place after the horrors of World War I. As you may know, last month, the U.S. determined that North Korea used chemical warfare agent VX to assassinate Kim Jong Nam in the Kuala Lumpur airport in violation of the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 and imposed sanctions prescribed by that Act. Accordingly, I respectfully request that you determine if the Russian Government has also violated the Chemical and Biological Weapons and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 and apply sanctions as appropriate.”

Read the entire letter here and below:

March 15, 2018

Donald J. Trump
President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

I am writing to respectfully request that you review whether Russia should be subject to sanctions contained in the Chemical and Biological Weapons and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 following the poisoning of British citizen Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia.

I am encouraged that your administration has made clear it shares the United Kingdom’s assessment that Russia is responsible for the March 14 nerve attack that has injured dozens of other British citizens, including a police officer who remains hospitalized. As our joint statement with France, Germany, and the UK notes, “this use of a military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia, constitutes the first use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War.” The statement goes on to rightly declare “our concerns are also heightened against the background of a pattern of earlier irresponsible Russian behavior.” Indeed, this attack echoes the poisoning of another former Russian spy, Alexander Litvinenko, who died in the UK in 2006 after drinking tea laced with polonium – an assassination that was later traced to Russia.

It is critical that we both support our allies in countering these brazen Russian attacks and act consistently to uphold chemical weapons bans put in place after the horrors of World War I. As you may know, last month, the U.S. determined that North Korea used chemical warfare agent VX to assassinate Kim Jong Nam in the Kuala Lumpur airport in violation of the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 and imposed sanctions prescribed by that Act. Accordingly, I respectfully request that you determine if the Russian Government has also violated the Chemical and Biological Weapons and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 and apply sanctions as appropriate.

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter and I look forward to continuing to work with you to keep America safe and secure.

Sincerely,

EDWARD R. ROYCE
Chairman

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