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(Washington, DC) — Adotei Akwei, managing director for government relations for Amnesty International USA, issued the following statement in response to reports that the United States House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee is advancing a bill that would significantly cut the Obama administration's international affairs budget request:
"Congress should fully fund the President's FY12 International Affairs Budget request. At a time of fiscal hardship, it is more imperative than ever that the United States utilize its resources to the maximum. A relatively small investment will help promote freedom and development abroad, which will in turn help to bring about greater global stability and security.
"These monies fund civilian-led programs that help alleviate extreme poverty, respond to humanitarian emergencies, support democratic institutions and the rule of law, prevent violence against women and girls, and otherwise promote development across the globe.
"The International Affairs Budget accounts for just over 1% of the entire federal budget. But this drop in the bucket has a powerful ripple effect where the investment pays far more dividends in the near and long-term future."
Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 3 million supporters, activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.
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For more information, please visit: www.amnestyusa.org.