The House of Representatives on Wednesday approved an amendment to bar the U.S. Export-Import bank from financing a railway corridor that links Turkey, Georgia and Azerbaijan.
Representative Joseph Crowley, a Democrat, said the 258-kilometer project did not warrant U.S. support because it bypasses Armenia and effectively continues "an illegal economic blockade against the Caucasus nation."
As designed, the project is "an effort to hurt the Armenian people and can only result in greater regional instability," Crowley said. He credited Armenia with having "made great strides in democratic and economic reforms in spite of its neighbors' demonstrated hostility."
The amendment was approved without opposition. A press release issued by Crowley's office predicted Senate passage of a similar amendment. It said the amendment is expected to become law before the end of the month.