Today, Representatives Deborah Ross (NC-02) and Mike Lawler (NY-17), co-chairs of the Congressional Moldova Caucus, introduced the U.S. – Moldova Defense Partnership Act, legislation that would help Moldova modernize its military following Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Moldova’s neighbor, Ukraine.

The bill directs the State Department to maximize funding available to Moldova through the European Recapitalization Incentive Program to assist the country in meeting its defense needs and to support its transition away from Russian-produced military equipment. Currently, 99% of Moldova’s military equipment dates from the Soviet-era and is largely ill-suited to help the country defend itself against Russian aggression.

“As Russia continues its unprovoked, unjustified war against Ukraine, Moldova is increasingly facing intimidation by the Russian government and threats to its sovereignty and security,” said Congresswoman Ross. “Now more than ever, we must ensure our democratic allies have the tools and resources they need to defend themselves in the face of Russian aggression. I’m proud to introduce this legislation with Congressman Lawler and send a strong message that the United States stands with the people of Moldova at this critical moment in the country’s history.”

"I’m proud to join my Moldova Caucus Co-Chair Deborah Ross in introducing the U.S.-Moldova Defense Partnership Act," said Congressman Lawler. "Moldova is a critical partner and ally, bravely standing up to Putin’s aggression and repeated attempts to thwart their democracy. It’s incumbent on us and our democratic partners to ensure Moldova is well-equipped to defend itself, stand up to Russian aggression, and work in closer concert with the free world. This legislation will help make that possible by providing the investment Moldova’s military needs, ensuring its modernization, and weaning it off of outdated Russian equipment."

This legislation will ensure the United States continues to express full support for its democratic allies in Europe. Bill text is available here.