U.S. Congress to analyze Western Balkan countries’ cooperation with Russia, United States and NATO

EPA-EFE/MICHAEL REYNOLDS

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The U.S. Congress has adopted the ‘National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018’, according to which the Secretary of Defense, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, shall submit to the congressional defense committees and the Committees on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives a report on security cooperation with respect to Western Balkan countries. 

The report shall include an assessment of security cooperation between each Western Balkan country - Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Macedonia - and the Russian Federation.  

It shall include a list of Russian weapons systems and other military hardware and technology valued at USD 1,000,000 or more that have been provided to or purchased by each Western Balkan country since 2012.

Furthermore, the report shall also include a description of the participation of each Western Balkan country’s security forces in training or exercises with the Russian Federation since 2012, as well as description of any security cooperation agreements each Western Balkan country has entered into with the Russian Federation.

The Secretary of Defense is also tasked with providing an assessment of intelligence cooperation between each Western Balkan country and the Russian Federation.

The report shall also include an assessment of how security cooperation between each Western Balkan country and the Russian Federation affects the security interests of the United States, the NATO, the Western Balkan country and each NATO member state that borders the Western Balkan country.

Section 1237 of the ‘National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018’ reads that the Secretary of Defense, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, shall also submit a report on cooperation between each Western Balkan country and the United States.

The report shall also include an assessment of security cooperation between each Western Balkan country and NATO, as well as description of each Western Balkan country’s participation and activities in NATO’s Partnership for Peace program.