Congressman Paul Cook

Representing the 8th District of California
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Rep. Cook Votes for Increased Sanctions on Russia, North Korea, and Iran

Jul 25, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON-   Rep. Paul Cook (R-Apple Valley) voted today for HR 3364, the Countering Adversarial Nations Through Sanctions Act. The bill includes a package of comprehensive sanctions against North Korea, Russia, and Iran – three regimes that continue to threaten their neighbors and undermine US national security. The bill passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support.

The first provision of HR 3364 targets those involved in the Iranian regime’s ballistic missile program, its efforts to destabilize the region and threaten Israel, and its ongoing human rights abuses. It imposes sanctions on any individual who contributes materially to Iran’s ballistic missile program, weapons of mass destruction programs, or participates in the sale or transfer of military equipment to Iran. It also calls for increased sanctions on anyone who is identified to be responsible for torture and other violations of internationally recognized human rights.  

The second provision of HR 3364 counteracts Russian aggression by strengthening sanctions in response to cyber-attacks and interference in Ukraine, empowers Congress to review any sanctions relief, and works to strengthen international cooperation in opposing Russian aggression. Specifically, the legislation provides for a mandated Congressional review if sanctions are relaxed, suspended, or terminated. It targets corruption and key sectors of the Russian economy, including arms sales and the export of oil and gas. Lastly, it also fixes a provision in a previous Senate bill that could have hurt the US economy while benefitting Russian energy oligarchs.

The third provision of HR 3364 amends the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016 to enhance the President’s authority to impose sanctions on those who violate U.N. Security Council resolutions regarding North Korea. It expands sanctions to further deter North Korea’s nuclear weapons programs by cutting off Kim Jung Un’s access to cash. Additionally, the bill cracks down on North Korea’s shipping and use of international ports and targets those who employ North Korean slave labor.

Rep. Cook said, “Iran, North Korea, and Russia continue to pose a serious threat to U.S. national security. These additional sanctions will give us additional tools to combat their continued aggression and ensure their illicit activities don’t go unchecked.”

A member of the House Armed Services, Natural Resources, and Foreign Affairs Committees, Cook served as an infantry officer and retired after 26 years as a Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps. During his time in combat, he was awarded the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts.