Traveled to region to meet with Arkansas troops and participate in high-level meetings in the region
Jul 10 2013
WASHINGTON–U.S Senator John Boozman (R-AR) said the situation across the Middle East “remains very volatile” and despite the lack of easy answers to the region’s problems, he sees a “need for U.S. leadership” after attending a series of high level meetings, classified briefings and visits with Arkansas troops stationed in the region last week.
“The situation throughout the region remains very volatile,” Boozman said. “The U.S. is trying to facilitate peace negotiations between President Hamid Karzai and the Taliban in Afghanistan. The events in Egypt were unfolding in real time while we were in neighboring countries. The escalating conflict in Syria is straining the entire region in terms of both their own security and their ability to help refugees who have sought safety in nearby countries. And of course the entire Middle East remains concerned about a nuclear Iran. While there are no simple solutions, there is a great deal of need for U.S. leadership in the region.”
Boozman traveled with a delegation consisting of Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Deb Fischer (R-NE). The delegation had meetings and briefings in Afghanistan, Jordan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The delegation also stopped in Germany to visit wounded U.S. servicemen and women receiving care there and hear about the work of the Air Force in Europe and Africa. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) joined the delegation in Afghanistan on the Fourth of July.
While in Afghanistan, Boozman had an opportunity to visit with Arkansas troops serving with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).
“We always want to make sure that our troops serving abroad have everything they need to complete their mission and return home safely. This is especially important in the age of sequestration. We discussed the impact of that, as well as the effort to accelerate peace talks, so that we can bring our men and women home. And of course we talked about the prospects for the Hogs football team this fall as well,” Boozman said.