WASHINGTON (March 13, 2014) – Congresswoman Kaptur expressed her appreciation to Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel for his leadership during the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.  Testifying before the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, Secretary Hagel addressed the situation in Ukraine prior to discussing the Defense Department’s Fiscal Year 2015 budget with committee members.

Kaptur, co-chair of the Congressional Ukrainian Caucus, said Secretary Hagel has shown exemplary leadership during the Ukraine crisis.  He noted that the Obama Administration has focused on de-escalating the crisis and supporting the new Ukrainian government while “reaffirming our commitments to our allies, NATO partners, in Europe.”

He acknowledged the leadership of defense subcommittee members in passing a $1 billion package of loan guarantees to the new government in Ukraine.

“I know that many members of this committee, particularly Congresswoman Kaptur, have been instrumental in helping the United States stand with the Ukrainian people,” said Hagel, a former Republican senator from Nebraska.

He said the United States has suspended all military-to-military engagements and exercises with Russia and augmented joint training with NATO partners. 

He said the events in Ukraine “underscore the need for America’s continued global engagement in leadership.”