Summary: H.R.2242 — 114th Congress (2015-2016)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.2242. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (05/05/2015)

World Press Freedom Protection Act of 2015

This bill authorizes the President to impose U.S. admissibility sanctions against a foreign person who:

  • is responsible for severe restrictions on the freedom of expression or freedom of the press; or
  • has materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, such an activity.

The President may waive such sanctions if in U.S. national security interests, and terminate them under specified conditions.

Sanctions shall not apply if necessary to comply with the Agreement between the United Nations (U.N.) and the United States regarding the U.N. Headquarters or other applicable international obligations of the United States.

The President shall report to Congress annually regarding each foreign person sanctioned, and the dates and reason for the imposition of any sanctions.

It should be U.S. policy to respond strongly to the growing number of restrictions, arrests, killings, and visa delays or denials faced by foreign journalists and their domestic employees.

An executive of a foreign state-owned media organization who is applying for a nonimmigrant I-visa (foreign media representative) shall be refused the visa if any U.S. journalist or news organization personnel were expelled, had visas denied, or faced violence in the course of working in such foreign state during the previous fiscal year.

Annual country reports of human rights practices under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 shall now include information about the country's practices with respect to foreign journalists and their domestic personnel.

It is the sense of Congress that:

  • restrictions on journalists and media websites and Internet censorship are significant foreign trade barriers;
  • the United States Trade Representative should include a list of blocked U.S. websites in its annual report on foreign trade barriers; and
  • the United States should pursue disputes to end foreign blockage of U.S. websites at the World Trade Organization.