Congress makes the following findings:
The Government of the Russian Federation has sought to exert influence throughout Europe and Eurasia, including in the former states of the Soviet Union, by providing resources to political parties, think tanks, and civil society groups that sow distrust in democratic institutions and actors, promote xenophobic and illiberal views, and otherwise undermine European unity. The Government of the Russian Federation has also engaged in well-documented corruption practices as a means toward undermining and buying influence in European and Eurasian countries.
The Government of the Russian Federation has largely eliminated a once-vibrant Russian-language independent media sector and severely curtails free and independent media within the borders of the Russian Federation. Russian-language media organizations that are funded and controlled by the Government of the Russian Federation and disseminate information within and outside of the Russian Federation routinely traffic in anti-Western disinformation, while few independent, fact-based media sources provide objective reporting for Russian-speaking audiences inside or outside of the Russian Federation.
The Government of the Russian Federation continues to violate its commitments under the Memorandum on Security Assurances in connection with Ukraine’s Accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, done at Budapest December 5, 1994, and the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe Final Act, concluded at Helsinki August 1, 1975 (commonly referred to as the “Helsinki Final Act”), which laid the ground-work for the establishment of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, of which the Russian Federation is a member, by its illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014, its illegal occupation of South Ossetia and Abkhazia in Georgia in 2008, and its ongoing destabilizing activities in eastern Ukraine.
The Government of the Russian Federation continues to ignore the terms of the August 2008 ceasefire agreement relating to Georgia, which requires the withdrawal of Russian Federation troops, free access by humanitarian groups to the regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and monitoring of the conflict areas by the European Union Monitoring Mission.
The Government of the Russian Federation is failing to comply with the terms of the Minsk Agreement to address the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, signed in Minsk, Belarus, on February 11, 2015, by the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, France, and Germany, as well as the Minsk Protocol, which was agreed to on September 5, 2014.
(6) The Government of the Russian Federation is—
in violation of the Treaty between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Elimination of their Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles, signed at Washington December 8, 1987, and entered into force June 1, 1988 (commonly known as the “INF Treaty”); and