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According to the publicly available data, the administration is requesting approximately $18.7 billion in security assistance globally for FY 2016, which includes $8.3 billion in State Department-funded programs. That leaves an estimated $10.4 billion in Defense Department-funded programs where publicly available information is scant at best.

Tomorrow the Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing on U.S. Security Assistance to Africa. Here are four important trends on U.S. military and police aid to Africa.

In December 2006, Mexican President Felipe Calderon kicked off a new phase of the decades-long drug war when he sent thousands of federal soldiers and police into his home state of Michoacán to battle criminal groups operating in the region. This battle soon became a nationwide war that continues to this day.

Just last week, 42...

An increasingly well-known U.S. human rights law barring American military assistance to foreign security forces that commit crimes like murder, kidnapping, rape, and torture has played an important role in encouraging Central and South American countries to crack down on these crimes.

Following the State Department’s budget request to boost military aid to Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine for FY 2016, the Defense Department appears to be following suit with a request to increase military assistance through its European Reassurance Fund to these countries. The aim of the aid to Georgia is “to defend themselves and to enable their participation as full operational partners within NATO…” and “strengthen deterrence against aggressive actions by Russia….”

U.S. faith leaders have stated their support for the peace process in Colombia, and they have some recommendations for how the U.S. can adjust its aid to help the country’s effort for peace. On Monday, 32 faith-based leaders released a letter through the Latin American Working Group (LAWG) calling for the United States to support civilian institutions and civil society over the military.  

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