U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) today released this statement expressing serious concerns about the Kremlin's decision to end the U.S. Agency for International Development's operations in Russia:
"The Putin government has once again taken steps counter to the best interests of the Russian people. By kicking USAID out of the country, Russia is abruptly cutting off a 20-year relationship in which the US has provided not only support of critical human rights and democracy programs, but also important health programs that help Russia's most vulnerable citizens. This development is yet another example of President Obama's failed "reset' policy. It's also further evidence of the Putin government's increasingly anti-democratic behavior and its ongoing suppression of human rights."