The Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, is to visit Estonia on 22 April, leading a bipartisan delegation to key NATO allies amid the tensions with Russia.
Ryan and the delegation will visit the UK, Norway, Poland and Estonia to “meet with government officials and military leaders to review and discuss evolving security threats facing Europe as well as opportunities for greater economic cooperation”, the office of the Speaker said in a statement.
The visit happens at the time when US tensions with Russia are high after the US strike against Syria in retaliation for a chemical attack the country’s president, Bashar al-Assad, a key Russian ally, perpetrated against his own people.
According to the Washington Post, Estonian leaders have been particularly concerned about Russian aggression at their front door, including reports of airspace incursions and naval exercises conducted by the Russian military, and Trump’s conciliatory campaign stance toward Russia have only aggravated those concerns.
The delegation, led by Ryan, will include representatives Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) of the Financial Services Committee and Mac Thornberry (R-TX) of the Armed Services Committee, as well as representatives Ron Kind (D-WI), Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY), Martha Roby (R-AL), Don Bacon (R-NE), and Brian Mast (R-FL).
Cover: Paul Ryan (Reuters).