Legislation Will Now go to the President’s Desk for His Signature
Washington, D.C. — In an effort to strengthen the United States’ response to the brazen and vicious acts of terrorism carried out by Boko Haram, U.S. Senator Susan Collins authored and introduced a bipartisan bill aimed at stopping the spread of this terrorist organization. Senator Collins’ bill passed the Senate in September of 2015. This evening, following ongoing advocacy from Senator Collins, the House unanimously passed this bipartisan legislation. The legislation will now go to the President's desk for his signature.
Senator Collins’ legislation would require a new 5-year U.S. government strategy to counter the threat of Boko Haram and assist the Government of Nigeria in addressing the legitimate grievances of vulnerable populations affected by this terrorist organization.
“Boko Haram has pledged allegiance to ISIS and continues to commit terrible acts of brutal violence against civilians in Nigeria as well as in Chad, Cameroon, and Niger. This bipartisan legislation signals a renewed congressional commitment to pursuing Boko Haram and bolstering U.S. efforts throughout the region. The already dire situation there will continue to worsen if the current trajectory is not significantly altered,” Senator Collins stated. “By definition, Boko Haram means Western education is forbidden. I urge the President to immediately sign this bill into law and send an international signal that we will never forget the girls of Nigeria who were targeted simply because they chose to pursue an education.”
In 2014, in response to Boko Haram’s kidnapping of the 276 school girls in Nigeria, Senator Collins, joined by Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), led all twenty women Senators in urging Secretary Kerry to seek Boko Haram’s addition to the United Nation’s al-Qaeda Sanctions List. Following this letter, the United Nations Security Council voted to subject Boko Haram to a complete asset freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo.
Co-sponsors include eighteen Senators: Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Patty Murray (R-WA), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), David Vitter (R-LA), and James Inhofe (R-OK).