In the company of world outcasts: what threatens Russia with the status of a state sponsor of terrorism

In the company of global outcasts: what threatens Russia with the status of a state sponsor of terrorism

The US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations approved on Wednesday a resolution to include Russia in the list of countries supporting terrorism.

“There is no doubt that Russia, led by Vladimir Putin, is a state sponsor of terrorism. What he did, giving the order to go to Ukraine, was a terrorist act. He is a war criminal, and he is responsible for every crime that was committed on his behalf,” James Rish, a Republican senator, said in an interview with Voice of America.

As explained in an interview with the Ukrainian Service, “ Voice of America” ​​by Republican Senator Chris Koons, the final decision on recognizing Russia as a state sponsoring terrorist activities in connection with the illegal intrusion into the territory of Ukraine must be made by the Joe Biden administration.

According to the State Department definition, a state sponsor of terrorism is a country that has “repeatedly supported acts of international terrorism.” For the first time such a list was compiled by the US State Department in 1979. Since then, the document has been compiled annually by the US Secretary of State and published in the US Code of Federal Regulations.

There are several criteria for getting into this “black list”. This is active and direct or indirect support for acts of international terrorism. According to the terminology of the US State Department, such countries are called “safe havens” for terrorism. There are currently four states on the list:Cuba, North Korea, Iran and Syria.


Cuba was included in the list of state sponsors of terrorism in 1982. According to a US State Department report, she continued to provide safe haven for about two dozen members of the Basque terrorist group ETA, safe haven and safe travel for members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and US wanted individuals.

At the same time, the US State Department noted in 2013 that “there are no signs that the Cuban authorities provided weapons or carried out military training for terrorist groups.” The report states that Cuba is a sponsor of the peace talks between the FARC and the Colombian government and has distanced itself from the Basques. In 2015, Barack Obama proposed to remove Cuba from this list and sent the proposal to Congress, and it was saddled. But on January 12, 2021, in the final days of Donald Trump's presidency, the US State Department re-listed Cuba.

North Korea

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea was listed in 1988 and delisted on 11 October 2008. The United States removed North Korea from the list after agreeing that IAEA experts would be allowed access to all of North Korea's nuclear facilities declared by the agency. But after another deterioration in relations with the United States in 2017, the DPRK was again included in the list of sponsors of terrorism.


Syria was included in the list of state sponsors of terrorism in 1979. According to a 2012 US State Department report, despite internal conflict, Syria continues to support international terrorism, in particular the Lebanese Hezbollah and Palestinian terrorist groups. Syria also plays a significant role in illegal terrorist financing schemes.


This country was included by the US State Department in the list of state sponsors of terrorism in 1984. The reason is that Iran continues to increase terrorist activity. According to the American side, he provides financial, material and logistical support to terrorist militant groups in the Middle East and Central Asia. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is called the main body and mechanism for supporting terrorists. In 2012, Iran was suspected by the United States of plotting terrorist attacks in India, Thailand, Georgia and Kenya.

Iran is being blamed for its extensive support for the Syrian government, including with weapons, in the context of the Syrian conflict. Iran provides weapons, training and funding to Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups. Since 2006, Iran has assisted in the rearmament of Hezbollah, bypassing an explicit UN Security Council ban. The State Department believes that Iran supported terrorists in Yemen and provided assistance to al-Qaeda.

What threatens the status of a state sponsor of terrorism

Sanctions that are imposed on such states include restrictions on receiving assistance from the United States, a ban on the export and sale of defense products, measures to control the export of dual-use goods, various financial and other restrictions.

In addition, the United States may impose additional sanctions against such a state, refuse in economic assistance and remove diplomatic immunity from the representatives of the country. And family members of victims of terrorist attacks get the right to apply for compensation in the US courts.

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