- The Washington Times - Monday, August 6, 2018

Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said Monday that he secured an agreement from Konstantin Kosachev, the Russian Federation’s Foreign Affairs Committee chairman, to send a delegation of Russian government officials to the U.S.

“Engagement is vital to our national security and peace around the world. Today, I met with Chairman Kosachev, and we agreed on the importance of continued dialogue. I invited the Russian Federation to send a delegation to the Capitol, and they have agreed to take this important next step,” Mr. Paul said in a statement.

The U.S. visit will be the first in three years for the Russian Federation. Mr. Paul’s press released noted that nuclear proliferation and terrorism will be among the issues the international leaders discuss.

The announcement comes just days after Mr. Paul’s spokesman confirmed the senator planned to lead a U.S. delegation to Moscow. The senator and other members of Congress are currently in Moscow meeting with government officials.

This is the second trip for U.S. lawmakers to Russia. Republicans spoke to their foreign counterparts in July, ahead of the Helsinki summit, to discuss several issues including Russian meddling in U.S. elections.

President Trump’s similar invitation to Russian President Vladimir Putin was met with concern from members of Congress. U.S. intelligence leaders all agree that the Russian threat to American elections, especially the upcoming midterms, are serious and ongoing.

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