YEREVAN, June 20. / ARKA /. The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, by a bipartisan vote of 25 to 5, overwhelming adopted a Fiscal Year 2015 (FY15) foreign aid legislative package that, once again, reaffirmed U.S. support for the longstanding U.S. assistance program for Nagorno Karabakh, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).
"The Committee recommends assistance for victims of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in amounts consistent with prior years, and for ongoing needs related to the conflict. The Committee urges a peaceful resolution of the conflict," read the report which accompanies the State-Foreign Operations appropriations bill.
Nagorno Karabakh was one of only seven aid recipients from the entire Europe and South and Central Asia region to be specifically cited by the panel. Others included Afghanistan, Pakistan, Serbia, and Kosovo.
The Committee remained silent on specific U.S. assistance levels to most countries, including the Caucasus countries, thereby essentially approving the broad outlines of President Obama's proposed spending levels of $20.7 million in Economic Support Funds (ESF) for Armenia, along with $1.7 in Foreign Military Finance (FMF) aid and $600,000 in International Military Education and Training (IMET) funds.
The President's proposed budget maintained parity in appropriated U.S. military aid to Armenia and Azerbaijan. The measure also effectively endorsed the President's proposal to allocate $9.6 million in Economic Support Funds to Azerbaijan, and $38.2 million in ESF and $10 million in FMF to Georgia. -0-