February 15, 2019

Whitehouse Co-Chairs Bipartisan Delegation to 2019 Munich Security Conference

Schedule includes McCain Award presentation, panel on climate change as national security threat

Providence, RI – Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) this evening will set off for Munich, Germany to join more than 450 world leaders and international security decision-makers at the annual Munich Security Conference. 

Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Whitehouse will co-chair a delegation that includes 17 members of Congress.  Whitehouse has served as the Democratic lead for the Congressional delegation to the annual conference since 2013, originally at the invitation of the late Senator John McCain.

“Senator McCain’s absence will be felt very keenly in Munich this year,” said Whitehouse.  “It is more important than ever for members of Congress to follow Senator McCain’s example and demonstrate to the world the strength of America’s vital relationship with our transatlantic allies.”

On Friday evening, the congressional delegation will join Cindy McCain at the Bavarian Parliament for the presentation of a dissertation award named in honor of Senator McCain, who was a fixture at the Munich Security Conference for four decades.  The John McCain Dissertation Award will be awarded annually at the conference for academic contributions in the field of political science, with an emphasis on the transatlantic relationship.

Whitehouse will participate on Saturday in a panel discussion of the immense threat climate change poses to national security.  Fellow panelists scheduled to take part include Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Defense for the People’s Republic of Bangladesh; Ine Eriksen Soreide, Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Kingdom of Norway; and Bunny McDiarmid, Co-Executive Director of Greenpeace International.

While in Munich, Whitehouse and Graham will also lead the delegation in bilateral meetings with heads of state and government and cabinet ministers from a number of countries, including Britain, Germany, Norway, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

The Munich Security Conference runs through Sunday, February 17.  The annual event was founded in 1963 by Ewald von Kleist, a prominent German publisher.  The conference is the major global forum for the discussion of security policy.


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