President Biden waives Section 907 restrictions on US aid to Azerbaijan

ANCA Calls on Congress to Zero-Out Military Aid to Azerbaijan; Tighten Presidential Waiver Authority of Section 907

WASHINGTON, DC – Despite ongoing Azerbaijani aggression against Armenia and Artsakh, President Joe Biden has, yet again, waived Section 907 restrictions on US aid to Azerbaijan, clearing the way for continued US assistance to the corrupt, anti-Armenian Aliyev regime, reported the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA).

“President Biden’s decision to green-light military aid to Azerbaijan by waiving Section 907, again, emboldens President Aliyev to continue his illegal imprisonment of Armenian POWs, deadly attacks against Artsakh, and ongoing occupation of sovereign Armenian territory,” said ANCA executive director Aram Hamparian. “The ANCA will continue to work with US Senate and House leaders to zero-out US military aid to Azerbaijan and restrict presidential waiver authority of Section 907.”

The ANCA has been running an online campaign urging President Biden and Congress to maintain section 907 restrictions on US aid to Azerbaijan.

During his run for office, on October 14th, 2020, then-candidate Biden stated that the United States must “fully implement and not waive requirements under Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act to stop the flow of military equipment to Azerbaijian.” As President, he first reversed his position on the issue on April 23, 2021 – on the eve of his historic announcement properly recognizing the Armenian Genocide. “American recognition of the Armenian Genocide comes with responsibilities, among them, not arming or abetting Azerbaijan’s drive to complete this crime,” commented Hamparian at the time. “Any action by President Biden that green-lights US aid to the Aliyev regime runs counter to his clear stand and, more profoundly, the spirit of his recent recognition of the Armenian Genocide.”

Section 907, enacted in 1992, establishes statutory restrictions on US assistance to the Government of Azerbaijan “until the President determines, and so reports to the Congress, that the Government of Azerbaijan is taking demonstrable steps to cease all blockades and other offensive uses of force against Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.” Congress included a Section 907 waiver in the FY2002 Foreign Operations, Export Financing, and Related Programs Appropriations Act. US presidents – Republican and Democrat – have waived Section 907 annually ever since.

The Section 907 waiver and subsequent extensions require a number of certifications, including that granting the waiver “will not undermine or hamper ongoing efforts to negotiate a peaceful settlement between Armenia and Azerbaijan or be used for offensive purposes against Armenia.”

A US Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, issued earlier this year, revealed that the State Department consistently failed to inform Congress of the impact of over $164 million in assistance to Baku on the military balance between Azerbaijan and Armenia.

“In fiscal years 2014 through 2021, State’s reporting to Congress did not address some required elements, such as the impact of proposed assistance on the military balance between Azerbaijan and Armenia,” asserts the GAO report. “State’s 2021 guidance to agencies did not provide detailed instructions about the information required for its reporting to Congress. Unless State takes steps to ensure its reporting addresses all required elements, Congress may lack important information about US assistance to the government of Azerbaijan.”

The GAO report went further, to explain that State and DOD, from fiscal year 2014 to 2020, “did not document how they determined that their programs would not be used for offensive purposes against Armenia.” While program-level considerations of the waiver provision are not statutorily required, documenting such considerations would help ensure State’s access to quality information to support its certification of the waiver extension and its related reporting to Congress, explains the report.

According to the GAO, the US has provided about $808 million in overall US aid to Azerbaijan in fiscal years 2002 through 2020.

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The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) is the largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.
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6 Comments

  1. I actually met Biden, about 20 years ago, when he was a Senator; he made a personal appearance at the Saint Gregory Armenian Apostolic Church, here in San Francisco, California. I was very impressed, among about 50 people who were there to listen to his presentation. It was free of charge, and we had lots of time to ask questions.

    It was only when Biden served as the Vice President, for President Obama (2009-2917), that I began to question his will to do what is right, for the People of Armenia. His backseat for the ride silence, while Obama sold Armenia down the river, was a red flag; though, it’s true that such a role is typical for Vice Presidents.

    Then came President Trump, which brought to mind the old saying: “From the Frying Pan, into the Fire.”

    In 2020, I decided to vote 3rd Party, as a Protest Vote, and I’m not sorry that I did that, for reasons that can be found in this ANCA News Article.

    In April, 2021, it looked like things are going to be really good, with President Biden, when he formally acknowledged that the century old Armenian Genocide was a crime against humanity, and a genocide.

    But, Biden was cutting backroom deals with President Erdogan: He was already taking measures to waive Section 907, back in 2021, and now again in 2022. Now, negative aspects of the situation have been compounding, as President Biden desires to reward Erdogan, because the Turkish Despot has served America’s interests in the Ukraine.

    It’s really too bad, because (20 years ago) Joe Biden was a man of great potential.

    • Joe Biden has always been corrupt. He exited the 1988 presidential race because of plagiarism. I’m not sure how you’re coming to the conclusion he was a man of great potential. He has always been eagerly pro-war, he has gotten very wealthy by accepting Chinese Govt money to send manufacturing jobs to Beijing, etc. Within the beltway he is known to be a selfish dolt. And, it must be said, Trump was an excellent president compared to what’s going on now.

  2. Biden is the President of the US not Armenia. You guys keep forgetting… He is there to serve American interests not Armenian/Indian/Greek or some Christian defense group. Alivey maybe be corrupt but they need him right now vs. Russia.

    • Actually, US interest would be served by having a real
      friend leading Turkiye. Democratic values, respect for other cultures and their territories. Not a corrupt scumbag who represents the opposite of everything that the US says it stands for. Our moral power in this world has disintegrated because of relationships with people like that blasted Erdogan and the Turkish state in general. All so we can put some missiles on a patch of land, some of which was stolen from Armenians I believe. So sad that the beacon of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law is tainted with the stench of the evil with which it associates. Wish we could convince the Greeks to take us back and allow our missiles there. BTW, which US President hasn’t sold out the Armenians?

  3. Many thanks to the above contributors for sharing their enlightening insights into the ongoing genocide of Armenians. Yes, American presidents have let us down; however, we must continue to persevere as did our ancestors. We should build on President Biden’s public announcement(albeit long overdue) calling Turkey out for its attempted genocide circa 1915. Trump is a liar. Erdogan is a liar. Putin is a liar. MSB is a liar. Biden told the truth publicly.

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