Press Releases

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-VA), Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and U.S. Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI), Ranking Member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released a statement today after voting to support two resolutions of disapproval blocking the sale of jets, unmanned drones and weaponry to the United Arab Emirates:

“The UAE is and will continue to be a critical security partner of the United States. We commend the UAE’s decision to recognize and establish full diplomatic relations with Israel through the signing of the Abraham Accords on September 15, 2020.  We appreciate that the UAE and Israel have been building political and economic ties that can ultimately make the region more secure.

“Our vote for this resolution of disapproval should not be construed as general opposition to a closer military relationship with the UAE and we remain open to considering support of the sale of advanced capabilities, including the F-35 and MQ-9, provided such sales are subject to sufficient congressional review. Congress has a long-established and rigorous review process for these types of arms sales in order to ensure that they are consistent with the national security objectives of the U.S. and our allies, aligned with our values, and fully consider any potential unintended consequences. 

“Unfortunately, the Trump administration has once again tried to circumvent and undermine congressional oversight responsibilities while rushing through these sales in the final days of the administration. Many aspects of this proposed sale remain conceptual and we are being asked to support a significant transfer of advanced U.S. technology without clarity on a number of key details regarding the sale or sufficient answers to critical national security questions. Especially with a sale of this magnitude and sensitivity, Congress must exercise its oversight role to ensure proper safeguards of U.S. technology are in place. 

“When sales go through the regular congressional process, foreign countries can be assured that it is the entire U.S. government supporting them. It makes the relationship deeper and more reliable.  

“Unfortunately, the Trump administration has not given Congress the opportunity or information we need to consider the sale in a thoughtful and deliberate manner.”