Text: S.960 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)All Information (Except Text)

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Reported to Senate (07/24/2013)

Calendar No. 147

113th CONGRESS
1st Session
S. 960

[Report No. 113–79]


To foster stability in Syria, and for other purposes.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

May 15, 2013

Mr. Menendez (for himself, Mr. Corker, Mr. Coons, and Mr. Casey) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

July 24, 2013

Reported by Mr. Menendez, with amendments

[Omit the part struck through and insert the part printed in italic]


A BILL

To foster stability in Syria, 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; table of contents.

(a) Short title.—This Act may be cited as the “Syria Transition Support Act of 2013”.

(b) Table of contents.—The table of contents for this Act is as follows:


Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.

Sec. 2. Appropriate congressional committees defined.

Sec. 3. Findings.

Sec. 4. Sense of the Senate.

Sec. 4.5. Purposes of assistance.

Sec. 5.6. No authorization for the use of military force.

Sec. 101. Report on United States strategy on Syria.

Sec. 102. Congressional oversight of United States Government activities in Syria.

Sec. 201. Humanitarian assistance to the people of Syria.

Sec. 202. Humanitarian and development assistance through international organizations.

Sec. 203. Bilateral assistance to countries that host Syrian refugees.

Sec. 202.204. Sense of Congress.

Sec. 203.205. Report on strategy to communicate to the Syrian people about assistance provided by the United States Government.

Sec. 206. No authorization for new humanitarian funds.

Sec. 301. Syria Transition Fund.

Sec. 302. Adjusting sanctions provisions in preparation for a political transition.

Sec. 303. Report on Syrian weapons stockpiles.

Sec. 304. Pre-transition international consensus.

Sec. 305. International support for a peaceful transition.

Sec. 401. Definitions.

Sec. 402. Imposition of sanctions with respect to selling, transferring, or transporting defense articles, defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria.

Sec. 403. Imposition of sanctions with respect to persons providing petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria.

Sec. 402. Imposition of sanctions with respect to the sale, transfer, or transportation of defense articles, defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria.

Sec. 403. Imposition of sanctions with respect to the provision of petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria.

Sec. 404. Sanctions described.

Sec. 405. Waivers.

Sec. 405. National security waiver.

Sec. 406. Sense of Congress on sanctions.

Sec. 501. Lethal and increased non-lethal support for the vetted opposition.

Sec. 502. Prohibition on aid to Free Syrian Army in event of chemical weapons use.

Sec. 503. Prohibition on aid to Free Syrian Army in event of sale or illegal transfer of United States defense articles or services.

SEC. 2. Appropriate congressional committees defined.

In this Act, except as specifically provided in title IV of this Act, the term “appropriate congressional committees” means the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives.

SEC. 3. Findings.

Congress makes the following findings:

(1) Since mass peaceful demonstrations started in Syria on March 15, 2011, the Government of Syria, led by Bashar al-Assad, has responded by committing human rights abuses and launching a violent crackdown that has claimed an estimated 70,000 lives and degenerated into a civil war.

(2) The civil war has caused a humanitarian crisis. According to the United Nations, there are more than 1,400,000 Syrian refugees registered in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, and Iraq and more than 2,600,000 Syrians displaced within the country. More than three-quarters of refugees and internally displaced persons are women and children.

(3) The refugee crisis threatens the stability of the Middle East, putting immense burdens on Syria’s neighbors, most notably Lebanon and Jordan, but also Turkey and Iraq.

(4) The civil war has increased the danger that the Assad regime could lose control of its chemical weapons stockpile, with the chemical weapons potentially falling into the hands of terrorist groups like Hizballah and al Qaeda.

(5) On April 25, 2013, the White House issued a letter to Congress stating that “our intelligence community does assess with varying degrees of confidence that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale in Syria, specifically the chemical agent Sarin”.

(6) The security vacuum in Syria has created a safe haven for both Shia and Sunni extremists, which could threaten the security of the United States and its partners in the region.

(7) Instability in Syria has threatened Israel’s security, particularly on the shared border along the Golan Heights.

(8) A change of government in Syria could be a significant blow to the Government of Iran and Hizballah, which would lose a strong ally and which have also been aggressively providing military and other assistance to Bashar al-Assad’s forces, including through the trafficking of weapons and supplies on commercial flights originating from or terminating in Iran.

(9) The commitments made by the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces at the international meeting in Istanbul on April 20 and 21, 2013, constitute an important endorsement of shared principles and objectives that should guide United States Government cooperation with the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces and affiliated forces. These principles include a commitment to the territorial integrity of Syria, a rejection of sectarianism and extremism, and pledges to secure chemical weapons and support nonproliferation efforts.

(10) It is vital to the national security interests of the United States to ensure that the United States planning and programs, specifically those conducted under the authorities or funding provided in or authorized under this Act, are focused on ensuring a stable and appropriate political transition in Syria and limiting the threats posed by extremist groups, weapons proliferation, sectarian and ethnic violence, and refugee flows in the aftermath of the current conflict.

(11) The President’s goals of Assad leaving power, an end to the violence, and a negotiated political settlement in Syria are prerequisites for a stable, democratic future for Syria and regional peace and security, but absent decisive changes to the present military balance of power on the ground in Syria, sufficient incentives do not yet exist for the achievement of such goals.

(12) The leadership of many United States friends and allies, including the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the President of France, the Prime Minister of Turkey, the King of Jordan, the King of Saudi Arabia, the Crown Prince of the United Arab Emirates, and the Amir of Qatar, have stated their strong support for more robust international response to change the military balance of power on the ground in Syria.

(13) The President should increase his consultations with Congress regarding what additional resources and authorities may be necessary to support United States national security interests in Syria, including the defense of United States allies and partners in the Middle East.

SEC. 4. Sense of the Senate.

It is the sense of the Senate that the United States—

(1) strongly condemns the ongoing violence and widespread human rights violations perpetrated against the Syrian people by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad;

(2) should support civilians and innocent victims of the conflict in Syria, particularly women and children who are displaced and vulnerable to physical and psychological exploitation;

(3) affirms the neutrality of medical professionals providing humanitarian assistance and health care on a non-political basis and condemns attacks against such personnel or interference in the provision of medical care;

(4) should support efforts of democratically oriented political opposition groups in Syria to agree upon a political transition plan that is inclusive and protects the rights of all minority ethnic groups in the country;

(5) welcomes the pledges of humanitarian assistance made by the Governments of Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, China, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Morocco, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and members of the European Union, and encourages prompt delivery of those pledges, which will contribute to meeting the needs of the victims of this conflict, and encourages all donors to coordinate with the United Nations;

(6) should help ensure that, once a stable transitional government is established in Syria, it is committed to multiparty democracy, open and transparent governance, respect for human rights and religious freedom, protection of refugees and asylees, promoting peace and stability with its neighbors, enhancing the rule of law, and rehabilitating and reintegrating former combatants; and

(7) should fully implement existing sanctions on Syria, including Executive Order 13606, dated April 22, 2012, which sanctions any individual or entity that assists or enables the commission of serious human rights abuses, through computer or network disruption, tracking, or monitoring, by the Government of Syria or the Government of Iran.

The purposes of assistance authorized by this Act are—

(1) to support transition from the current regime to a just and democratic state that is inclusive and protects the rights of all Syrians regardless of religion, ethnicity, or gender;

(2) to assist the people of Syria, especially internally displaced persons and refugees, in meeting basic needs including access to food, health care, shelter, and clean drinking water;

(3) to provide political and economic support to those neighboring countries who are hosting refugees fleeing Syria and to international organizations that are providing assistance and coordinating humanitarian relief efforts;

(4) to oppose the unlawful use of violence against civilians by all parties to the conflict in Syria;

(5) to use a broad array of instruments of national power to expedite a negotiated solution to the conflict in Syria, including the departure of Bashar al-Assad;

(6) to recognize the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces (in this Act referred to as the “Syrian Opposition Coalition” or “SOC”) as a legitimate representative of the Syrian people;

(7) to engage with opposition groups that reflect United States interests and values, most notably the Syrian Opposition Coalition, any legitimate successor groups, including appropriate subgroups within the opposition that are representative of the Syrian people, as well as the broader international community, that are committed to facilitating an orderly transition to a more stable democratic political order, including—

(A) protecting human rights, expanding political participation, and providing religious freedom to all Syrians, irrespective of religion, ethnicity, or gender;

(B) supporting the rule of law;

(C) rejecting terrorism and extremist ideologies;

(D) subordinating the military to civilian authority;

(E) protecting the Syrian population against sectarian violence and reprisals;

(F) cooperating with international counterterrorism and nonproliferation efforts, as well as securing, dismantling, and eventual destruction of any inherited nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons of mass destruction (WMD) or WMD-related programs;

(G) supporting regional stability and avoiding interference in the affairs of neighboring countries; and

(H) establishing a strong justice system and ensuring accountability for conflict-related crimes;

(8) to promote the territorial integrity of Syria and continuity of the Syrian state by supporting a post-Assad government that is capable of providing security, services, and political and religious rights to its people;

(9) to provide foreign assistance, defense articles, defense services, and training to specific members of the Syrian Supreme Military Council, particular units of the Free Syrian Army, and other Syrian entities opposed to the government of Bashar al-Assad that have been properly and fully vetted and share common values and interests with the United States;

(10) to closely coordinate with key partners on contingency planning, including Turkey, Jordan, Israel, the Gulf Cooperation Council, and the European Union, to ensure that these partners are prepared for an appropriate response to the evolving situation in Syria, including being ready and capable of securing of chemical or biological weapons or other proliferation emergencies, preventing the flow of fighters and weapons out of Syria into neighboring countries, or taking other measures against the Government of Syria, including contingency planning for a no-fly zone;

(11) to support efforts to identify and document the activities of those individuals who target or lead units or organizations that target civilian populations and vulnerable populations, including women and children, or have engaged in otherwise unlawful acts, and to ensure that they are held accountable for their actions; and

(12)to ensure a stable and appropriate political for their actions;

(12)to support programs that provide scholars, scientists, and tertiary level students in Syria and their families, whose lives, health, and freedoms are at risk as a result of their academic pursuits, fellowship and scholarship opportunities at safe host universities outside Syria in order to ensure that they can be an asset to the rebuilding of a stable and democratic Syria; and

(13)to ensure a stable and appropriate political transition in Syria and limit the threats posed by extremist groups, weapons proliferation, sectarian and ethnic violence, and refugee flows in the aftermath of the current conflict.

Nothing in this Act shall be construed as providing authorization for the use of military force by the United States Armed Forces.

SEC. 101. Report on United States strategy on Syria.

(a) In general.—Not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees an unclassified report, with an classified annex, as necessary, on an integrated United States Government strategy to achieve the purposes set forth in section 4 5.

(b) Metrics.—The strategy referenced in subsection (a) should include specific proposed actions to be taken by each relevant government agency, a timeframe for beginning and completing such actions, and metrics for evaluating the success of each proposed action relative to the purpose of such action.

(c) International engagement strategy.—The strategy referenced in subsection (a) should specifically include sections describing specific United States Government programs and efforts—

(1) to establish international consensus on the transition and post-transition period and government in Syria;

(2) to work with the Government of Russia on the situation in Syria and the transition and post-transition period and government in Syria, including how such programs can leverage the shared interests of the United States and Russia in avoiding the expansion of extremist ideologies and terrorist groups in Syria and the region;

(3) to work with the Friends of Syria group to ensure that extremist and terrorist groups in Syria are isolated and that the core of the opposition can be brought to the negotiating table; and

(4) to build an international consensus to limit and, to the greatest extent possible eliminate, support from the Government of Iran for the Syrian regime, including a potential ban on all commercial flights between Iran and Syria.

(d) Congressional consultation.—The President shall actively consult with the appropriate congressional committees prior to the submission of the report required under subsection (a).

SEC. 102. Congressional oversight of United States Government activities in Syria.

(a) In general.—The President shall keep Congress, through the appropriate congressional committees, fully and currently informed of all United States Government activities with respect to Syria, including activities and programs conducted or funded pursuant to this Act.

(b) Reporting.—The President shall provide a classified briefing not less than on a quarterly basis to the appropriate congressional committees detailing all United States Government activities with respect to Syria, including activities and programs conducted or funded pursuant to this Act.

SEC. 201. Humanitarian assistance to the people of Syria.

(a)Authority.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law that restricts the provision of United States economic or other non-military assistance in Syria, the President is authorized to provide economic and other non-military assistance to meet humanitarian needs to the people of Syria, either directly or through appropriate groups and organizations pursuant to the provisions of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151 et seq.) or the Migration and Refugee Assistance Act (22 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.).

(b) Rule of construction.—Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize new or additional funding for humanitarian needs.

SEC. 202. Humanitarian and development assistance through international organizations.

The President should instruct the United States permanent representative or executive director, as the case may be, to the United Nations voluntary agencies, including the World Food Program, the United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Children’s Fund, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and other appropriate international organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross to use the voice and vote of the United States to support humanitarian and development assistance for the people of Syria in order to accomplish the purposes described in section 5.

SEC. 203. Bilateral assistance to countries that host Syrian refugees.

The President should support bilateral refugee assistance programs in countries, including Iraq, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, and Lebanon, which have experienced an influx of refugees from Syria.

Consistent with the policy objectives described in section 4 5, it is the sense of Congress that—

(1) the United States should continue to coordinate with other donor nations, the United Nations, other multilateral agencies, and nongovernmental organizations to enhance the effectiveness of humanitarian assistance to the people suffering as a result of the crisis in Syria;

(2) countries hosting Syrian refugees should be commended for their efforts and should be encouraged to maintain an open border policy for fleeing Syrians;

(3) the United States Government should continue to work with these partners to help their national systems accommodate the population influx and also maintain delivery of basic services to their own citizens; and

(4) the United States Government should seek to identify humanitarian assistance as originating from the American people wherever possible and to the fullest extent practicable, while maintaining consideration for the health and safety of the implementers and recipients of that assistance and the achievement of United States policy goals and the purposes set forth in section 4.

(4) all assistance made available under this section should, without restricting the ability of a contractor or grantee to use its own organizational brand or logo for purposes of identification (subject to such standards or regulations as the President may establish), be identified as being “From the American People” if the relevant Assistant Secretary of State, in consultation with the implementing partner, determines that such identification would not—

(A) jeopardize the safety or impartiality of implementing partners that deliver the assistance;

(B) jeopardize the health and safety of the intended beneficiaries;

(C) compromise the intrinsic independence or neutrality of a program or materials where implementing partner independence or neutrality is inherently important to the success of the effort;

(D) undermine United States efforts to empower the democratically oriented political opposition; or

(E) otherwise render the provision of assistance impracticable.

(a) In general.—Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees an unclassified report with a classified annex, as necessary, on an integrated United States Government strategy to ensure that the people of Syria people Syria are made aware to the maximum extent possible of the assistance that the United States Government provides to Syrians both inside Syria and those seeking refuge in neighboring countries.

(b) Content.—The report should include the following elements:

(1) A discussion of how the United States balances three imperatives of—

(A) maximizing the efficacy of aid provided to the people of Syria;

(B) ensuring that there is awareness among the people of Syria on the amount and nature of this aid; and

(C) leveraging this aid to improve the credibility of the Syrian Opposition Coalition amongst the people of Syria.

(2) Methods by which the United States Government and its partners plan to communicate to the people of Syria what assistance the United States has provided.

(3) A plan, with specific action, timelines, and evaluation metrics for promoting awareness of the United States Government’s assistance to the maximum extent possible while taking into consideration and ensuring the safety of its implementing partners and personnel providing that assistance and the achievement of the United States policy goals and the purposes set forth in section 4 5.

(4) An assessment of the Syrian Opposition Coalition’s Assistance Coordination Unit (ACU)’s, or any appropriate successor entity’s, capacity to participate in the distribution of assistance, and a description of steps the United States Government is taking to increase their profile so as to help build their credibility among Syrians.

SEC. 206. No authorization for new humanitarian funds.

Nothing in this title shall be construed to authorize new or additional funding for humanitarian needs or aid to international organizations.

SEC. 301. Syria Transition Fund.

(a) Syria Transition Fund.—

(1) ESTABLISHMENT.—There is established a Syria Transition Fund (in this title referred to as the “Transition Fund”) from which funds may be made available, notwithstanding any other provision of law that restricts the provision of United States economic or non-military assistance in Syria, for assistance and contributions to promote security and support the objectives described in section 4 5.

(2) OBLIGATION OF FUNDS; NOTIFICATION.—

(A) IN GENERAL.—The Transition Fund may rely upon the administrative authorities of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151 et seq.), and obligation of such funds may not occur until 15 days after the date on which the President has provided notice of intent to obligate to the appropriate congressional committees and the Committees on Appropriations of the Senate and the House of Representatives.

(B) WAIVER.—The notification required under subparagraph (A) may be waived if failure to do so would pose a substantial risk to human health or welfare, in which case notification shall be provided as early as practicable, but in no event later than three days after taking the action to which such notification requirement was applicable in the context of the circumstances necessitating such waiver. Any notification provided pursuant to such a waiver shall contain an explanation of the emergency circumstances.

(b) Purpose.—The purpose of the Transition Fund is to provide support in the early transition period to enable an effective political transition to a more democratic and inclusive political structure and provide for initiatives that will improve the security of the United States, United States partners and allies, and the people of Syria. The Transition Fund may be used to support programs in the following areas and in priority order:

(1) SECURITY SECTOR SUPPORT.—Programs to train, equip, and professionalize law enforcement and military forces in Syria, including police and border protection forces, to protect the people of Syria.

(2) SUPPORT FOR REGIONAL STABILITY.—Programs to support government agencies and law enforcement and military forces in Syria, as well as those in neighboring countries, to provide support to refugees from Syria, to stem the flow of weapons and fighters out of Syria into other nations, and to prevent the proliferation of chemical or other weapons of mass destruction, including preventing such weapons from falling into the hands of al Qaeda, Hizballah, and other terrorist groups.

(3) TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE FOR PHASED DISARMAMENT.—Technical assistance to transitional authorities to—

(A) create special weapons storage sites used to separately warehouse and catalogue vetted groups’ weaponry during a transition period;

(B) repurpose weapons systems for eventual new Syrian security forces; and

(C) transition rebel groups into civilian life or official membership in new forces.

(3)(4)TRANSITIONAL JUSTICE AND CONFLICT RESOLUTION.—Programs to reduce the likelihood of retribution or sectarian violence in the aftermath of the end of the Assad regime and to promote the creation of a stable center, including improving relations between the moderate Sunni, Alawite, and Christian communities.

(4)(5)TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO PROMOTE DEMOCRACY AND BUILDING DEMOCRATIC INSTITUTIONS.—Technical assistance, capacity building, and training programs that—

(A) facilitate the development of an accountable, effective, and representative democratic government;

(B) protect the rule of law during the transition;

(C) support the development and administration of a modern justice system;

(D) assist with the development of a Syrian constitution that fosters a sense of unity and contributes to national reconciliation among different components of Syrian society; and

(E) support the establishment of an inclusive and transparent electoral system in Syria.

(E) support the establishment of an inclusive and transparent electoral system in Syria; and

(F) develop the capacity of democratically-oriented political parties and civil society organizations.

(5)(6)TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO SUPPORT ECONOMIC REVITALIZATION.—Technical assistance, capacity building, and training programs that support the resumption of economic activity, restore access to international markets, promote international investment, provide for financial transparency and fiscal stability, and empower the private sector.

(6)(7)TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE FOR BASIC SERVICES.—Technical assistance, capacity building, and training programs to provide basic civil government services to the people of Syria.

(7)(8)COLLECTION OF EVIDENCE ON UNLAWFUL ACTIVITIES TARGETING CIVILIAN POPULATIONS.—Programs that support the collection of evidence related to the activities of those individuals who target or lead units or organizations that target civilian populations and vulnerable populations, including women and children, or have engaged in otherwise unlawful acts, and to ensure that they are held accountable for their actions.

(9) POST-CONFLICT STABILIZATION.—High-level diplomacy and planning for post-conflict stabilization efforts.

(c) Authorization of appropriations.—In addition to other assistance authorized under law, there is authorized to be appropriated to the Transition Fund, out of amounts appropriated for the support of political and economic transition in the Middle East and North Africa, up to $250,000,000 annually for fiscal years 2013 through 2015.

(d) Uses of funds for nonproliferation.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law that restricts the provision of United States assistance in Syria, up to $100,000,000 of the funds authorized to be appropriated annually under subsection (c) may also be transferred to and merged with funds made available to carry out in Syria the purposes of chapter 9 of part II of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2349bb et seq.; nonproliferation and export control assistance).

(e) Transfer authority.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—In addition to other transfer authorities available to the Department of State, the Department of Defense, or other United States Government agencies or departments, funds available for foreign assistance or funds of the Department of Defense or other United States Government agencies or departments that are specifically allocated towards addressing the situation in Syria may be transferred to the Transition Fund by the agencies or departments to which the funds are available, subject to existing reprogramming requirements and limitations, including congressional notification and approval requirements. Amounts so transferred shall be merged with funds otherwise made available under this section and remain available until expended for the purposes specified in subsection (b).

(2) LIMIT.—The total amount of funds made available to the Transition Fund may not exceed $250,000,000 in any fiscal year.

(3) TRANSFER AUTHORITY.—Funds available to carry out assistance authorized by this section may be transferred to an agency or account determined most appropriate to facilitate the provision of assistance authorized by this section.

(4) ADDITIONAL TO OTHER AUTHORITIES.—The transfer authorities in paragraphs (1) and (3) are in addition to any other transfer authority available to the Department of State or other United States Government agencies.

(f) Sunset provision.—Unless specifically renewed, the Transition Fund shall terminate on September 30, 2015.

(g) Annual report.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 180 days after the establishment of the Transition Fund, and annually thereafter for the duration of the Transition Fund, the Secretary of State, in collaboration with the Secretary of Defense and other appropriate agencies, shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on United States efforts to assist the political transition in Syria with a specific focus on the efforts supported by the Transition Fund. The Secretary shall also provide an update briefing to the appropriate congressional committees every 180 days.

(2) CONTENT.—The report required under paragraph (1) shall include the following elements:

(A) A description of the efforts undertaken and planned to be undertaken by the United States Government through the Transition Fund to support the policy objectives outlined in section 4 5.

(B) A description of the efforts supported by the Transition Fund to support an effective and secure political transition in Syria and how those activities align with the purposes described in subsection (b).

(C) A description of the efforts undertaken and planned to be undertaken by the United States Government, supported by the Transition Fund, to leverage additional financial assistance from the international donor community, including the Gulf states, in support of political transition and rebuilding in Syria.

(C)(D)A specific accounting of all monies obligated through the Transition Fund by program and project.

(D)(E)Metrics and benchmarks to make allocations from the Transition Fund and measure the performance of the Transition Fund and programs funded by the Transition Fund.

(E)(F)A description of efforts undertaken to coordinate with other donors and ensure that there is not a duplication of efforts, including among Federal agencies.

(3) FORM.—The report under paragraph (1) shall be submitted in unclassified form, but may include a classified annex.

SEC. 302. Adjusting sanctions provisions in preparation for a political transition.

(a) Sense of Congress.—It is the sense of Congress that the United States Government should begin a phased process to remove sanctions on Syria once the Government of Syria has ceased its campaign of violence against the people of Syria and a transition has begun to a representative and inclusive government that is demonstrably committed to the principles set forth in subparagraphs (A) through (H) of section 4 5(7) and is recognized by the United States.

(b) Amendments to Syria accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2003.—Section 5 of the Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2003 (Public Law 108–175; 22 U.S.C. 2151 note) is amended—

(1) in subsection (c)—

(A) in paragraph (1)—

(i) by inserting “(A)” after “(1)”; and

(ii) by striking “paragraphs (1) through (4) of subsection (d)” and inserting “subparagraphs (A) through (D) of paragraph (1) of subsection (d)”;

(B) by redesignating paragraphs (2) and (3) as subparagraphs (B) and (C), respectively; and

(C) in subparagraph (C), as redesignated by subparagraph (B) of this paragraph, by striking the comma at the end and inserting the following: “; or

“(2) makes the determination that the Government of Syria meets the requirements described in paragraph (2) of such subsection and certifies such determination to Congress in accordance with such subsection,”; and

(2) in subsection (d)—

(A) in paragraph (1), by inserting “(A)” after “(1)”;

(B) by redesignating paragraphs (2), (3), and (4) as subparagraphs (B), (C), and (D), respectively; and

(C) in subparagraph (D), as redesignated by subparagraph (B), by striking the period at the end and inserting the following: “; or

“(2) (A) Bashar al-Assad is no longer the leader of Syria; and

“(B) the Government of Syria has ceased its campaign of violence against the people of Syria and begun the transition to a representative and inclusive government that is demonstrably committed to the principles of—

“(i) protecting human rights, expanding political participation, and providing religious freedom to all Syrians, irrespective of, religion, ethnicity, or gender;

“(ii) supporting the rule of law;

“(iii) rejecting terrorism and extremist ideologies;

“(iv) subordinating the military to civilian authority;

“(v) protecting the Syrian population against sectarian violence and reprisals;

“(vi) cooperating with international counterterrorism and nonproliferation efforts;

“(vii) supporting regional stability and avoiding interference in the affairs of neighboring countries;

“(viii) establishing a strong justice system and ensuring accountability for conflict-related crimes; and

“(ix) recognizing the Golan Heights ‘Separation of Forces Agreement Between Israel And Syria,’ signed on May 31, 1974, and the related protocol regarding United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) functions.”.

SEC. 303. Report on Syrian weapons stockpiles.

(a) In general.—Not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the President shall submit to Congress an assessment of the size and security of conventional and non-conventional weapons stockpiles in Syria.

(b) Content.—The report required under subsection (a) shall include the following elements:

(1) A description of who has or may have access to the stockpiles.

(2)A description of the sources and types of

(1) A description of who has command and control over and access to conventional and non-conventional weapons stockpiles.

(2)A description of the use and sources and types of weapons flowing from outside Syria to both government and opposition forces.

(3) A detailed plan to prevent the proliferation of conventional, biological, chemical, and other types of weapons in Syria.

SEC. 304. Pre-transition international consensus.

The Secretary of State should establish international consensus on the transition and post-transition period and government in Syria by—

(1) working with the government of Russia on the situation in Syria and the transition and post-transition period and government in Syria, including how such programs can leverage leveraging the shared interests of the United States and Russia in avoiding the expansion of extremist ideologies and terrorist groups in Syria and the region and working to end Russian financial and military support for the Assad regime;

(2) working with the Friends of Syria group to ensure that extremist and terrorist groups in Syria are isolated and that the core of the opposition can be brought to the negotiating table; and

(3) building an international consensus to limit and, to the greatest extent possible, eliminate support from the Government of Iran for the Syrian regime, including a potential ban on all commercial flights between Iran and Syria.

SEC. 305. International support for a peaceful transition.

It is the sense of Congress that the United States Government should work with international financial institutions to support the purposes described in section 5.

SEC. 401. Definitions.

In this title:

(1) ACCOUNT; CORRESPONDENT ACCOUNT; PAYABLE-THROUGH ACCOUNT.—The terms “account”, “correspondent account”, and “payable-through account” have the meanings given those terms in section 5318A of title 31, United States Code.

(1)(2)APPROPRIATE CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES.—The term “appropriate congressional committees” means—

(A) the Committee on Foreign Relations, the Committee on Finance, and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate; and

(B) the Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Committee on Ways and Means, and the Committee on Financial Services of the House of Representatives.

(2)(3)DEFENSE ARTICLE; DEFENSE SERVICE.—The terms “defense article” and “defense service” have the meanings given those terms in section 47 of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2794).

(4) FOREIGN FINANCIAL INSTITUTION.—The term “foreign financial institution” has the meaning of that term as determined by the Secretary of the Treasury pursuant to section 104(i) of the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010 (22 U.S.C. 8513(i)).

(3)(5)PERSON.—The term “person” means an individual or entity.

(4)(6)PETROLEUM.—The term “petroleum” includes crude oil and any mixture of hydrocarbons that exists in liquid phase in natural underground reservoirs and remains liquid at atmospheric pressure after passing through surface separating facilities.

(5)(7)PETROLEUM PRODUCTS.—The term “petroleum products” includes unfinished oils, liquefied petroleum gases, pentanes plus, aviation gasoline, motor gasoline, naptha-type jet fuel, kerosene-type jet fuel, kerosene, distillate fuel oil, residual fuel oil, petrochemical feedstocks, special naphthas, lubricants, waxes, petroleum coke, asphalt, road oil, still gas, and miscellaneous products obtained from the processing of crude oil (including lease condensate), natural gas, and other hydrocarbon compounds.

(6)(8)UNITED STATES PERSON.—The term “United States person” means—

(A) a natural person who is a citizen or resident of the United States or a national of the United States (as defined in section 101(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a))); and

(B) an entity that is organized under the laws of the United States or a jurisdiction within the United States.

SEC. 402. Imposition of sanctions with respect to selling, transferring, or transporting defense articles, defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria.

On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President may impose sanctions from among the sanctions described in section 404 with respect to any person that the President determines has, on or after such date of enactment, knowingly participated in or facilitated a significant transaction related to the sale, transfer, or transportation of defense articles, defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government.

SEC. 403. Imposition of sanctions with respect to persons providing petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria.

On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President shall impose the sanction described in paragraph (5) of section 404 and 2 or more of the other sanctions described in that section with respect to each person that the President determines has, on or after such date of enactment, knowingly participated in or facilitated a significant transaction related to the sale or transfer of petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government.

SEC. 402. Imposition of sanctions with respect to the sale, transfer, or transportation of defense articles, defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria.

(a) In general.—On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President shall impose 2 or more of the sanctions described in section 404 with respect to any person (other than a foreign financial institution) that the President determines has, on or after such date of enactment, knowingly participated in or facilitated a significant transaction related to the sale, transfer, or transportation of defense articles (including surface-to-air and surface-to-surface missile systems, including any S300 system and the Yakhont system), defense services, or military training to the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government.

(b) Sanctions with respect to foreign financial institutions.—On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President may prohibit the opening, and prohibit or impose strict conditions on the maintaining, in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by a foreign financial institution that the President determines has knowingly conducted, on or after such date of enactment, a significant transaction related to the sale, transfer, or transportation of defense articles (including surface-to-air and surface-to-surface missile systems, including any S300 system and the Yakhont system), defense services, or military training to—

(1) the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government; or

(2) any person added after April 28, 2011, to the list of specially designated nationals and blocked persons maintained by the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Department of the Treasury in connection with the conflict in Syria.

SEC. 403. Imposition of sanctions with respect to the provision of petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria.

(a) In general.—On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President shall impose 3 or more of the sanctions described in section 404 with respect to each person (other than a foreign financial institution) that the President determines has, on or after such date of enactment, knowingly participated in or facilitated a significant transaction related to the sale or transfer of petroleum or petroleum products to the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government.

(b) Sanctions with respect to foreign financial institutions.—On or after the date that is 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President may prohibit the opening, and prohibit or impose strict conditions on the maintaining, in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account by a foreign financial institution that the President determines has knowingly conducted, on or after such date of enactment, a significant transaction related to the sale or transfer of petroleum or petroleum products to—

(1) the Assad regime of Syria or any successor regime in Syria that the President determines is not a legitimate transitional or replacement government; or

(2) any person added after April 28, 2011, to the list of specially designated nationals and blocked persons maintained by the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Department of the Treasury in connection with the conflict in Syria.

(c) Humanitarian exception.—The President may not impose sanctions under this section with respect to any person for conducting or facilitating a transaction necessary to meet the humanitarian needs of the people of Syria.

SEC. 404. Sanctions described.

The sanctions the President may impose with respect to a person under sections 402 and 403 are the following:

(1) EXPORT-IMPORT BANK ASSISTANCE.—The President may direct the Export-Import Bank of the United States not to give approval to the issuance of any guarantee, insurance, extension of credit, or participation in the extension of credit in connection with the export of any goods or services to the person.

(2) PROCUREMENT SANCTION.—The President may prohibit the United States Government from procuring, or entering into any contract for the procurement of, any goods or services from the person.

(3) ARMS EXPORT PROHIBITION.—The President may prohibit United States Government sales to the person of any item on the United States Munitions List under section 38(a)(1) of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2778(a)(1)) and require termination of sales to the person of any defense articles, defense services, or design and construction services under that Act (22 U.S.C. 2751 et seq.).

(4) DUAL-USE EXPORT PROHIBITION.—The President may deny licenses and suspend existing licenses for the transfer to the person of items the export of which is controlled under the Export Administration Act of 1979 (50 U.S.C. App. 2401 et seq.) (as in effect pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.)) or the Export Administration Regulations under subchapter C of chapter VII of title 15, Code of Federal Regulations.

(5) BLOCKING OF ASSETS.—The President may, pursuant to such regulations as the President may prescribe, block and prohibit all transactions in all property and interests in property of the person if such property and interests in property are in the United States, come within the United States, or are or come within the possession or control of a United States person.

(6) VISA INELIGIBILITY.—In the case of a person that is an alien, the President may direct the Secretary of State to deny a visa to, and the Secretary of Homeland Security to exclude from the United States, the person, subject to regulatory exceptions to permit the United States to comply with the Agreement between the United Nations and the United States of America regarding the Headquarters of the United Nations and other applicable international obligations.

SEC. 405. Waivers.

(a) General waiver authority.—The President may waive the application of section 402 or 403 to a person or category of persons for a period of 180 days, and may renew the waiver for additional periods of not more than 180 days, if the President determines and reports to the appropriate congressional committees every 180 days that the waiver is in the vital national security interests of the United States.

(b) Waiver for humanitarian needs.—The President may waive the application of section 403 to a person for a period of not more than 180 days, and may renew the waiver for additional periods of not more than 180 days, if the President determines and reports to the appropriate congressional committees every 180 days that the waiver is to necessary to permit the person to conduct or facilitate a transaction that is necessary to meet humanitarian needs of the people of Syria.

(c) Form.—Each report submitted under subsection (a) or (b) shall be submitted in unclassified form but may include a classified annex.

SEC. 405. National security waiver.

(a) In general.—The President may waive the application of section 402 or 403 to a person or category of persons for a period of not more than 180 days, and may renew the waiver for additional periods of not more than 180 days, if the President determines and reports to the appropriate congressional committees every 180 days that the waiver is in the vital national security interests of the United States.

(b) Form.—Each report submitted under subsection (a) shall be submitted in unclassified form but may include a classified annex.

SEC. 406. Sense of Congress on sanctions.

It is the sense of Congress that the President should work closely with allies of the United States to obtain broad multilateral support for countries to impose sanctions that are equivalent to the sanctions set forth in this title under the laws of those countries.

SEC. 501. Lethal and increased non-lethal support for the vetted opposition.

(a) Authorization To provide lethal and increased non-Lethal assistance to vetted elements of the syrian opposition.—Subject to subsection (b), the President is authorized, notwithstanding any other provision of law that restricts military, non-military, or economic assistance to Syria, to provide defense articles, defense services, and military training to specific members of the Syrian Supreme Military Council, particular units of the Free Syrian vetted elements of the Syrian Supreme Military Council, the Free Syrian Army, and other Syrian entities opposed to the government of Bashar al-Assad, with funds made available for foreign assistance.

(b) Notification.—Not later than 15 days before obligating funds, otherwise providing any assistance, or otherwise making any commitment to provide the assistance described in subsection (a), the President shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees—

(1) a certification that—

(A) assistance to any individual, unit, or entities unit or entity will be provided consistent with section 620M of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2378d);

(B) the individual to whom assistance is being provided or is planned to be provided, or leader or leaders of any unit or entity, including all senior members of such unit or entity, to which assistance is being provided or is planned to be provided, are, based on the information available to the United States Government—the unit or entity to which assistance is being provided or is planned to be provided and the senior leaders of such unit or entity, are, based on the information available to the United States Government—

(i) not an organization or person that has been designated, or is affiliated with any or an associated force of an organization or person that has been designated, as a foreign terrorist organization pursuant to section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1189) or a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist” pursuant to Executive Order 13224 (66 Fed. Reg. 49079);

(ii) committed to rejecting terrorism and extremist ideologies;

(iii)opposed to the carrying out of sectarian violence and revenge killings; 13224 (66 Fed. Reg. 49079), and has been screened through all relevant terrorist databases, including the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE);

(ii) committed to rejecting terrorism and extremist ideologies;

(iii) opposed to the carrying out of sectarian violence, revenge killings, and other abuses of the laws of armed conflict, including international human rights and humanitarian law, and committed to an inclusive political transition;

(iv) committed to civilian rule, including subordinating the military to civilian authority, and the rule of law for Syria;

(v) committed to cooperating with international counterterrorism and nonproliferation efforts; and

(vi) supporting regional stability and avoiding interference in the affairs of neighboring countries;

(C)any military education and training

(C) there is significant international support from key European and Middle Eastern partners for providing the assistance referenced in this title, and United States efforts to provide this assistance are being coordinated with these partners;

(D)any military education and training should include information and training on appropriate leadership and command skills, protection of critical infrastructure, observance of and respect for applicable laws of armed conflict, respect for the rule of law, and the importance of civilian control of the military, including the capability to maintain a chain of custody of assistance being provided under this section, and, when appropriate, on securing chemical weapons sites and other important sites; and

(D)assistance provided sites;

(E) according to chain of custody criteria established and promulgated by the Department of State, the unit or entity to whom assistance is being provided can maintain a reasonable chain of custody of weapons consisting of a reasonable capability to document, account, and physically control the transfer, custody, and disposition of assistance being provided under this section; and

(F)assistance provided under this section to any specific individual or entity unit or entity shall immediately be terminated if the United States Government receives information that indicates that the individual or entity unit or entity is not in compliance with the terms laid out in subparagraph (B); and

(2) a written policy justification, budget, execution plan and timeline, and anticipated completion date for the planned activity.

(c) Restriction on anti-Aircraft defensive systems.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—Except as provided under paragraph (2), no anti-aircraft defensive systems may be transferred as part of the assistance authorized under this section.

(2) WAIVER.—The President may waive the restriction under paragraph (1) if—

(A) it is in the vital national security interest to do so;

(B) the President notifies Congress not later than 15 days before exercising such waiver;

(C) not later than 15 days before exercising such waiver, the President transmits to the appropriate congressional committees a report described in subsection (e) (f), together with the certification required under subsection (b)(1) specifically with respect to anti-aircraft defensive systems;

(D) the President certifies that—

(i) the systems provided have been equipped with appropriate tracking, disabling, or anti-tamper devices; or

(ii) effective end use monitoring, including appropriate disposition of systems, is in place; and

(E)the President certifies that the United States has consulted with regional allies regarding the systems provided. place;

(E) the President certifies that the United States has consulted with regional allies regarding the systems provided; and

(F) the President submits a strategy to implement an accelerated global program to secure or eliminate stocks of anti-aircraft defense systems and related equipment and facilities that pose a proliferation threat immediately after the cessation of violence.

(d) Code of conduct.—The United States Government shall encourage any entity receiving assistance pursuant to subsection (a) to commit to a code of conduct that includes respect for applicable laws of armed conflict, respect for the rule of law, and a commitment to refrain from sectarian violence and revenge killings.

(e)Reporting requirement.—In the event that includes—

(1) respect for applicable laws of armed conflict;

(2) respect for the rule of law;

(3) a commitment to refrain from sectarian violence and revenge killings; and

(4) a commitment to cooperate with transitional authorities in the establishment of special weapons storage sites and efforts to shift security functions to the transitional government.

(e) Nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction.—The United States Government shall encourage any entity receiving assistance pursuant to subsection (a) to commit to a Syria that is free of weapons of mass destruction, including any chemical, biological, or nuclear WMD-related programs.

(f) Reporting requirement.—In the event that the President exercises the authority in subsection (a), the President shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees every 90 days thereafter until such time as the authority is no longer being exercised, a detailed report on—

(1) the education, training or assistance provided;

(2) a rationale for why the assistance is being provided;

(2)(3)the vetting conducted to satisfy the certification requirement in subsection (b)(1);

(3)(4)steps taken to encourage the development of a code of conduct outlined in subsection (c) (d);

(4)(5)an assessment of the current military capacity of opposition forces receiving assistance;

(5)(6)an assessment of the ability of opposition forces inside and outside of Syrian to establish military activities impacting Syria, together with a practicable timetable for accomplishing these objectives;

(6)(7)an assessment of the ability of opposition groups to establish effective military control over Syria; and Syria;

(7)(8)a description of the financial and materiel resources currently available to opposition forces. forces;

(9) the criteria for chain of custody certification and the adherence by the Syrian opposition to chain of custody requirements; and

(10) a strategy for securing the lethal assistance being provided in the aftermath of the conflict.

(f)(g)Sunset provision.—Unless specifically renewed, the authority described in subsection (a) shall terminate on September 30, 2015.

SEC. 502. Prohibition on aid to Free Syrian Army in event of chemical weapons use.

In the event that the United States Government receives substantial evidence that any units or entities provided assistance under this title have engaged in the use of chemical weapons, the authority under this Act to provide assistance to those units or entities shall immediately terminate.

SEC. 503. Prohibition on aid to Free Syrian Army in event of sale or illegal transfer of United States defense articles or services.

In the event that the United States Government receives substantial evidence that any units or entities provided assistance under this title are selling or illegally transferring defense articles or defense services received from the United States Government, the authority under this Act to provide assistance to those units or entities shall immediately terminate.


Calendar No. 147

113th CONGRESS
     1st Session
S. 960
[Report No. 113–79]

A BILL
To foster stability in Syria, and for other purposes.

July 24, 2013
Reported with amendments