AHI welcomes the U.S. State Department’s announcement of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s decision to “waive restrictions temporarily for FY 2021 on the export, re-export, retransfer, and temporary import of non-lethal defense articles and defense services controlled under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation destined for or originating in Cyprus” as a good first step toward removing the Republic of Cyprus altogether from the list of countries to which arms sales are prohibited under the International Trade in Arms Regulations (ITAR).
The decision by the Administration demonstrates the evolving geostrategic importance the United States places on the Republic of Cyprus and strengthens U.S.-Republic of Cyprus relations.
“The Administration’s decision is for one year, and we will need to ensure it is renewed,” AHI President Nick Larigakis said. “The changes to the ITAR regulations concern only non-lethal defense articles for commercial sales. As such, AHI will continue to work with the State Department to reach an understanding that it is in U.S. interests to remove the Republic of Cyprus from the ITAR list altogether to make it eligible to acquire U.S. defense articles and defense services without conditions, especially because the United States values Cyprus as a strategic partner.”
AHI has published a White Paper and Issue Brief, has written to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, had an op-ed published, has issued statements, and has met with State Department officials and members of Congress and their staffs to advocate for the removal of the Republic of Cyprus altogether from the list of countries to which arms sales are prohibited under ITAR.