Government and Politics
September 27, 2022
As co-Chairs of the Senate NATO Observer Group, Shaheen and Tillis have led action in the U.S. Senate to support NATO enlargement and ensure continued U.S. support for Ukraine.
(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services Committees, and U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) joined the Atlantic Council to discuss the transatlantic alliance and continued U.S. support for Ukraine amidst Putin’s unprovoked war.
Shaheen spoke about NATO’s crucial role in advancing U.S. national security priorities, especially in responding to Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. The Senators, who are Co-chairs of the Senate NATO Observer Group, applauded the Senate’s recent overwhelming vote in support of Finland and Sweden’s accession into NATO, which will further strengthen NATO and its collective response to Putin’s aggression. Shaheen also discussed the need to ensure Ukraine’s continued success in Putin’s war, noting that his ambitions threaten the sovereignty of other nations. Working with our allies and partners will remain a critical priority and enhance the transatlantic alliance’s strategic deterrence, ensure peace in the Indo-Pacific and bolster new collaboration on security and democracy initiatives in responding to the emerging threats of the 21st century.
“Americans understand the importance of our support for Ukraine – the Ukrainian people are not only defending their land and freedom; they are fighting for the preservation of liberal democracies around the world,” said Shaheen. “What is happening in Ukraine matters not only to the Ukrainian people; it matters to Eastern Europe; it matters to the U.S. and it matters to the world. Putin is violating international norms to fulfill a delusional fantasy of re-building a Russian empire – his focus today is Ukraine, but we all know his gaze goes much farther. NATO and the United States must keep all options on the table to remind Putin that we are committed to do all we can to help Ukraine win.”
Senator Shaheen and Senator Tillis co-led a bipartisan delegation in June to the NATO Summit in Madrid, in addition to stops in Sweden and Finland to affirm strong bipartisan Senate support for their NATO membership aspirations. Also a member of the Senate Ukraine Caucus, Senator Shaheen has led action in the Senate in support of Ukraine in response to Putin’s belligerence. Last month, Shaheen released a statement ahead of the anniversary of Ukraine’s independence and the six-month mark of Russia’s further invasion of Ukraine. In July, Senator Shaheen and Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) introduced legislation that would require an interagency strategy toward the Black Sea region, which includes Ukraine. In March, the Senate passed bipartisan legislation Shaheen cosponsored that would ensure the U.S. undertakes coordinated efforts to collect and maintain evidence of war crimes and atrocities committed by Russia amid its invasion of Ukraine. In February, Shaheen led a successful bipartisan effort with Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) to pass a resolution that conveys a renewed and overwhelmingly bipartisan message from the U.S. Senate in fierce support of Ukraine. Earlier this year, Shaheen and Portman led a bipartisan delegation to Ukraine, where they met with President Zelenskyy and members of his administration. Before the Shaheen-Portman congressional delegation visit to Ukraine in January, Shaheen led a bipartisan group of lawmakers to Eastern Europe, including Ukraine, last June.