Text: H.R.3611 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (09/22/2009)


111th CONGRESS
1st Session
H. R. 3611

To restrict the diplomatic travel of officials and representatives of state sponsors of terrorism, and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
September 22, 2009

Mr. Broun of Georgia (for himself, Mr. Boren, Mrs. Myrick, Mr. Garrett of New Jersey, Mr. Linder, and Mr. Taylor) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs


A BILL

To restrict the diplomatic travel of officials and representatives of state sponsors of terrorism, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Limiting the Intrusive Miles of International Terrorist Sponsors Act of 2009” or the “LIMITS Act of 2009”.

SEC. 2. Findings.

Congress finds the following:

(1) Countries designated as state sponsors of terrorism represent a threat to the national security of the United States.

(2) The United States is obligated to permit officials and other representatives of countries designated as state sponsors of terrorism to travel to New York City to attend meetings and conduct official business at the United Nations.

(3) Individuals from countries not otherwise legally permitted to travel to the United States are given visas for delegates and representatives to the United Nations and other related diplomatic purposes.

(4) These delegates and representatives are in addition to the number of domestically assigned nationals living in the United States.

(5) Between January 1, 2004, and March 31, 2009, the Department of State issued, with full diplomatic immunity, 2,386 visas to delegates and representatives from Cuba, 2,585 visas to delegates and representatives from Iran, 2,053 visas to delegates and representatives from Sudan, 732 visas to delegates and representatives from Syria, and 869 to delegates and representatives from other state sponsors of terrorism.

(6) The delegates and representatives from Iran and Cuba, which are state sponsors of terrorism, are currently permitted to travel up to 25 miles from Columbus Circle in New York City for United Nations activities, far beyond the necessary working vicinity of the United Nations, giving them access not only to Manhattan, but to surrounding cities and States.

(7) The delegates and representatives from Syria and Sudan, both state sponsors of terrorism, are currently permitted to travel throughout the United States without any mileage restrictions.

(8) In June 2002, November 2003, and June 2004, Iranian diplomatic personnel from the Iranian Mission to the United Nations were caught photographing and videotaping the New York City subway and other popular landmarks.

(9) The Department of State expelled these individuals for being engaged in activities not consistent with their duties.

(10) Issuing approximately 8,625 visas over the past 5 years to personnel from countries designated as state sponsors of terrorism, without proper boundaries, creates a major security vulnerability within the United States.

(11) The presence of hundreds of individuals with diplomatic immunity from countries designated as state sponsors of terrorism is overwhelming United States counterterrorism and intelligence resources.

(12) The United States has an obligation to protect the American people against such threats.

SEC. 3. Restriction on diplomatic travel of officials and representatives of state sponsors of terrorism.

(a) In general.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law, and except as provided in subsections (b) and (c), the President shall restrict to the designated area the travel of officials and representatives of countries that are designated as state sponsors of terrorism who are visiting the United Nations headquarters complex in connection with official business at the United Nations headquarters complex.

(b) Waiver.—The President may waive the travel restriction described in subsection (a) if the President—

(1) determines that it is in the interest of national defense of the United States to do so; and

(2) submits to Congress a report that contains the reasons for such determination not later than 30 days after the issuance of such waiver.

(c) Exceptions.—

(1) INGRESS AND EGRESS.—For purposes of this section, the restriction on travel referred to in subsection (a) shall not include travel to and from John F. Kennedy International Airport or LaGuardia Airport to the designated area in connection with official business at the United Nations headquarters complex. Travel between the designated area and such airports shall be direct and without any intervening stops.

(2) ACCOMMODATIONS.—For purposes of this section, the restriction on travel referred to in subsection (a) shall not include travel to and from any lodgings or other hotel accommodations in which an official or representative is staying if such lodging or other hotel accommodation is within the designated area. Such permissible travel within the designated area may be made only by land.

(3) MEDICAL EMERGENCIES.—For purposes of this section, the restriction on travel referred to in subsection (a) shall not include travel to and from New York University medical center or Bellevue Hospital Center for emergency medical care.

(d) Rules of construction.—

(1) ON TRAVEL.—Nothing in this Act shall be construed to prohibit the placement of additional restrictions by the City of New York, the State of New York, or the law enforcement agencies of such City or State on the travel within the designated area of officials and representatives of countries that are designated as state sponsors of terrorism.

(2) OTHER RESTRICTIONS.—Nothing in this Act shall be construed to prohibit the placement by the President of additional restrictions on officials and representatives of countries that are designated as state sponsors or terrorism.

(e) Effective date.—This Act shall take effect on the date that is 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(f) Definitions.—In this Act:

(1) DESIGNATED AREA.—The term “designated area” means an area not greater than one-half of one mile (0.5 miles) in any direction on the island of Manhattan from the United Nations headquarters complex, but does not include any waterway.

(2) STATE SPONSOR OF TERRORISM.—The term “state sponsor of terrorism” means a country the government of which has been determined by the Secretary of State, for purposes of section 6(j) of the Export Administration Act of 1979, section 620A of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, section 40 of the Arms Export Control Act, or other provision of law, is a government that has repeatedly provided support for acts of international terrorism.

(3) UNITED NATIONS HEADQUARTERS COMPLEX.—The term “United Nations headquarters complex” means the complex of United Nations buildings located in the City of New York, on First Avenue between 42nd Street and 48th Street, with the street address of 760 United Nations Plaza.