Saturday, July 1 2017 15:17
Naira Badalian

Issues of extension of financial aid to Armenia, direct air traffic and avoidance of double taxation were discussed by ANCA and American establishment

ArmInfo. The Armenian National  Committee of America (ANCA) in consultations with representatives of  the White House, the State Department and members of the Congress  discussed the issues of expanding foreign aid, recognizing the  Armenian Genocide, as well as measures to control Azerbaijan's  aggression.

According to the ANCA, special attention was paid to the priorities  of the Committee in the draft law on foreign aid for the 2018  financial year: the prospects for increasing assistance to Artsakh to  ensure mine clearance and medical services, the preservation of US  economic assistance in Armenia, and the expansion of US support for  Armenia as a security zone for Middle Eastern Refugees.

At the same time, the ANCA delegation, headed by the chairman of the  committee Raffi Ambaryan, insisted on such key provisions as an  agreement on avoidance of double taxation and direct commercial and  cargo flights between Los Angeles and Yerevan.

An incident was also mentioned with the attack of security guards of  Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on peaceful protestors on May  16 in Washington. It was noted the need for a fundamental  reassessment of US-Turkey relations, taking into account also its  policy in connection with the recognition of the Armenian Genocide.

To note, on May 24, the US Presidential Administration Donald Trump  unveiled its budget recommendations for the fiscal year 2018 (FY18)  before the Congress. The proposed budget FY18, called the "New Fund  of American Grandeur", recommended reducing the assistance provided  in general by 29%, and by 60% - to the countries of Europe and  Eurasia. According to the budget of the administration, the  assistance to Armenia in FY18 will be reduced by 67%, decreasing from  $ 20.4 million in the previous financial year to $ 6.8 million. For  Georgia and Ukraine, it is planned to reduce financial assistance by  58% and 70%, respectively. Assistance to Azerbaijan - by 90%, and in  total, the country is expected to allocate 1 million USD. To recall,  the Appropriations Committee of the US Senate in 2017 provided  Armenia with financial assistance of $ 24.1 million and Azerbaijan -  $ 10.9 million. The Senate also recommended granting $ 1 million as  military assistance and $ 600,000 for military Training. In general,  the allocated assistance to Armenia was $ 3 million more than the US  President Barack Obama requested from the budget. The amount of aid  to Artsakh, provided since 1998, remained unchanged.

To recall, on May 16 this year at the Turkish Embassy in Washington  there was a fight between supporters and opponents of the policies of  Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. According to eyewitnesses,  Erdogan's supporters attacked participants in a peaceful  demonstration protesting against Erdogan's visit to the United  States. After the incident, the US House of Representatives approved  House Resolution 354, which regrets the violent actions of Turkish  security forces Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan against peaceful  demonstrators opposite the Turkish Embassy in Washington. Congressmen  emphasize that all those Turkish officials who participated in the  excesses in front of the Turkish Embassy in Washington on May 16 of  this year should be punished according to the laws of the United  States. The authors of the resolution also express concern over the  growing authoritarianism in Turkey and urge Washington to take  measures to promote the protection of freedom of expression and civil  society in that country. The decision of the House of Representatives  enraged Ankara.


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