Given the fact that illegal annexation of Ukraine's Crimea has gone into its second year now, Ayla Bakkalli, USA Representative of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis and USA member of the World Congress of Crimean Tatars, initiated collaboration with Andrij Dobriansky, Director of Communications of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) and Ukrainian National Information Service (UNIS) on “The Anti-Annexation of Crimea Initiative” to promote United States House Resolution 5241 on the Crimea Annexation Non-recognition Act of 2014 introduced at the 113th US Congress as response to the illegal annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation.

The primary objective of “The Anti Annexation of Crimea Initiative”  is to begin to build a constituent advocacy for US H.R. 5241 Act by raising discussion at the highest level in Washington DC among Congressional and Senate members against the annexation of Crimea.

This Act establishes a firm policy that the United States government does not recognize Russian sovereignty over Crimea, its territory, airspace and territorial waters and may take no action that implies recognition of Russian sovereignty. The Act prohibits any federal department or agency from taking any action or extending any assistance that recognizes or implies recognition of the de jure or de facto sovereignty of the Russian Federation over Crimea.

Ayla Bakkalli, Mr. Dobrinsky and Mr. Michael Sawkin met with members of the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on Wednesday, February 24, 2016 to discuss the current status of the legislation.

The same group also met with members of the US Department of State, Bureau of Democracy and Human Rights and Atlantic Council. In addition, the group attended a reception at the Lithuanian Embassy in Washington DC and celebrated Lithuania’s freedom from Soviet communism.