Text: H.R.2061 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 115-198 (07/20/2018)

 
[115th Congress Public Law 198]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



[[Page 132 STAT. 1519]]

Public Law 115-198
115th Congress

                                 An Act


 
To reauthorize the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004, and for other 
            purposes. <<NOTE: July 20, 2018 -  [H.R. 2061]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: North Korean 
Human Rights Reauthorization Act of 2017. 22 USC 7801 note.>> 
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``North Korean Human Rights 
Reauthorization Act of 2017''.
SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 22 USC 7801 note.>>  FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:
            (1) In 2014, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry (COI) 
        on Human Rights in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea 
        (DPRK) found that the grave human rights violations still being 
        perpetrated against the people of North Korea, due to policies 
        established at the highest level of the state, amount to crimes 
        against humanity. Crimes include forced starvation, sexual 
        violence against women and children, restrictions on freedom of 
        movement, arbitrary detention, torture, executions, and enforced 
        disappearances, among other hardships.
            (2) The COI also noted that the Government of the People's 
        Republic of China is aiding and abetting in crimes against 
        humanity by forcibly repatriating North Korean refugees back to 
        the DPRK. Upon repatriation, North Koreans are sent to prison 
        camps, tortured, or even executed. The Government of the 
        People's Republic of China's forcible repatriation of North 
        Korean refugees violates its obligation to uphold the principle 
        of non-refoulement, under the United Nations Convention Relating 
        to the Status of Refugees, done at Geneva July 28, 1951 (as made 
        applicable by the Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees, 
        done at New York January 31, 1967 (19 UST 6223)).
            (3) Estimates from the COI suggest that between 80,000 and 
        120,000 people are believed to be imprisoned in political prison 
        camps in North Korea. Another 70,000 are believed to be held at 
        other detention facilities. Prisoners in both situations are 
        subject to harsh conditions, limited food, sexual abuse, and in 
        most cases hard labor.
            (4) One of the findings of the COI report was the 
        persecution of religious minorities, especially Christians. 
        There is effectively no freedom of religion in North Korea, only 
        worship of the Kim family. Christians are subjected to 
        particularly acute persecution. It has been reported that 
        Christians in North Korea have been tortured, forcibly detained, 
        and even executed for possessing a Bible or professing 
        Christianity.

[[Page 132 STAT. 1520]]

            (5) North Korea profits from its human rights abuses. A 2014 
        report from the Asian Institute for Policy Studies suggests that 
        there are nearly 50,000 North Korean workers forced to labor 
        overseas, sometimes without compensation, and for as much as 20 
        hours at a time. Workers that received compensation were not to 
        be paid more than $150 per month, which is between 10 to 20 
        percent of the value of the labor they performed. Based on this 
        report, the regime may profit as much as $360,000,000 annually 
        from just 50,000 laborers.
            (6) On July 6, 2016, the United States imposed sanctions on 
        North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and other senior North Korean 
        officials for human rights violations as required by the North 
        Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016 (Public Law 
        114-122). This was the first time that the United States had 
        designated North Korean officials for human rights abuses.
            (7) The North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 
        2016 (Public Law 114-122) requires the President to impose 
        mandatory penalties under United States law on any person that 
        ``knowingly engages in, is responsible for, or facilitates 
        serious human rights abuses by the Government of North Korea''.
            (8) Although the United States Refugee Admissions Program 
        remains the largest in the world by far, the United States has 
        only resettled 212 refugees from North Korea since the date of 
        the enactment of the North Korea Human Rights Act of 2004 
        (Public Law 108-333).
SEC. 3. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that--
            (1) the United States Government should continue to make it 
        a priority to improve information access in North Korea by 
        exploring the use of new and emerging technologies and expanding 
        nongovernmental radio broadcasting to North Korea, including 
        news and information;
            (2) the United Nations has a significant role to play in 
        promoting and improving human rights in North Korea and should 
        press for access for the Special Rapporteur on the situation of 
        human rights in North Korea as well as the United Nations High 
        Commissioner for Human Rights;
            (3) because North Koreans fleeing into China face a well-
        founded fear of persecution upon their forcible repatriation, 
        the United States should urge China to--
                    (A) immediately halt the forcible repatriation of 
                North Koreans;
                    (B) allow the United Nations High Commissioner for 
                Refugees unimpeded access to North Koreans inside China 
                to determine whether such North Koreans require 
                protection as refugees;
                    (C) fulfill its obligations under the 1951 United 
                Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, 
                the 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees, 
                and the Agreement on the Upgrading of the UNHCR Mission 
                in the People's Republic of China to UNHCR Branch Office 
                in the People's Republic of China (signed December 1, 
                1995);

[[Page 132 STAT. 1521]]

                    (D) address the concerns of the United Nations 
                Committee against Torture by incorporating the principle 
                of non-refoulement into Chinese domestic legislation; 
                and
                    (E) recognize the legal status of North Korean women 
                who marry or have children with Chinese citizens, and 
                ensure that all such children are granted resident 
                status and access to education and other public services 
                in accordance with Chinese law and international 
                standards;
            (4) the President should continue to designate all 
        individuals found to have committed violations described in 
        section 104(a) of the North Korea Sanctions and Policy 
        Enhancement Act of 2016 (22 U.S.C. 2914(a)), regarding 
        complicity in censorship and human right abuses;
            (5) the United States currently blocks United States 
        passports from being used to travel to North Korea without a 
        special validation from the Department of State, and the 
        Department of State should continue to take steps to increase 
        public awareness about the risks and dangers of travel by United 
        States citizens to North Korea;
            (6) the United States should continue to seek cooperation 
        from all foreign governments to allow the United Nations High 
        Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) access to process North Korean 
        refugees overseas for resettlement and to allow United States 
        officials access to process refugees for resettlement in the 
        United States (if that is the destination country of the 
        refugees' choosing); and
            (7) the Secretary of State, through diplomacy by senior 
        officials, including United States ambassadors to Asia-Pacific 
        countries, and in close cooperation with South Korea, should 
        make every effort to promote the protection of North Korean 
        refugees and defectors.
SEC. 4. RADIO BROADCASTING TO NORTH KOREA.

    Section 103(a) of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 
U.S.C. 7813(a)) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``that the United States should facilitate'' 
        and inserting the following: ``that the United States should--
            ``(1) facilitate'';
            (2) in paragraph (1), as redesignated by paragraph (1) of 
        this section--
                    (A) by striking ``radio broadcasting'' and inserting 
                ``broadcasting, including news rebroadcasting,''; and
                    (B) by striking ``increase broadcasts'' and 
                inserting ``increase such broadcasts, including news 
                rebroadcasts,''; and
                    (C) by striking ``Voice of America.'' and inserting 
                the following: ``Voice of America; and''; and
            (3) by adding at the end the following:
            ``(2) expand funding for nongovernmental organization 
        broadcasting efforts, prioritizing organizations that engage 
        North Korean defectors in programming and broadcast services.''.
SEC. 5. ACTIONS TO PROMOTE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION.

    Section 104(a) of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 
U.S.C. 7814(a)) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``The President'' and inserting the 
        following:
            ``(1) In general.--The President'';

[[Page 132 STAT. 1522]]

            (2) by inserting ``, USB drives, micro SD cards, audio 
        players, video players, cell phones, wi-fi, wireless internet, 
        web pages, internet, wireless telecommunications, and other 
        electronic media that shares information'' before the period at 
        the end; and
            (3) by adding at the end the following:
            ``(2) <<NOTE: President. Grants.>>  Distribution.--In 
        accordance with the sense of Congress described in section 103, 
        the President, acting through the Secretary of State, is 
        authorized to distribute or provide grants to distribute 
        information receiving devices, electronically readable devices, 
        and other informational sources into North Korea, including 
        devices and informational sources specified in paragraph 
        (1) <<NOTE: Regulations.>> . To carry out this paragraph, the 
        President is authorized to issue regulations to facilitate the 
        free-flow of information into North Korea.
            ``(3) <<NOTE: President.>>  Research and development grant 
        program.--In accordance with the authorization described in 
        paragraphs (1) and (2) to increase the availability and 
        distribution of sources of information inside North Korea, the 
        President, acting through the Secretary of State, is authorized 
        to establish a grant program to make grants to eligible entities 
        to develop or distribute (or both) new products or methods to 
        allow North Koreans easier access to outside information. Such 
        program may involve public-private partnerships.
            ``(4) Culture.--In accordance with the sense of Congress 
        described in section 103, the Broadcasting Board of Governors 
        may broadcast American, Korean, Chinese, and other popular 
        music, television, movies, and popular cultural references as 
        part of its programming.
            ``(5) Rights and laws.--In accordance with the sense of 
        Congress described in section 103, the Broadcasting Board of 
        Governors should broadcast to North Korea in the Korean language 
        information on rights, laws, and freedoms afforded through the 
        North Korean Constitution, the Universal Declaration of Human 
        Rights, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights 
        in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, and any other 
        applicable treaties or international agreements to which North 
        Korea is bound.
            ``(6) Religious minorities.--Efforts to improve information 
        access under this subsection should include religious 
        communities and should be coordinated with the Office of 
        International Religious Freedom to ensure maximum impact in 
        improving the rights of religious persons in North Korea.
            ``(7) <<NOTE: Consultation.>>  Broadcasting report.--Not 
        later than--
                    ``(A) <<NOTE: Plan.>>  180 days after the date of 
                the enactment of this paragraph, the Secretary of State, 
                in consultation with the Broadcasting Board of 
                Governors, shall submit to the appropriate congressional 
                committees a report that sets forth a detailed plan for 
                improving broadcasting content for the purpose of 
                targeting new audiences and increasing listenership; and
                    ``(B) <<NOTE: Time period.>>  1 year after the date 
                of the enactment of this paragraph, and annually 
                thereafter for each of the next 5 years, the Secretary 
                of State, in consultation with the Broadcasting Board of 
                Governors, shall submit to the appropriate congressional 
                committees a report including--

[[Page 132 STAT. 1523]]

                          ``(i) a description of the effectiveness of 
                      actions taken pursuant to this section, including 
                      data reflecting audience and listenership, device 
                      distribution and usage, and technological 
                      development and advancement usage;
                          ``(ii) the amount of funds expended by the 
                      United States Government pursuant to section 403; 
                      and
                          ``(iii) other appropriate information 
                      necessary to fully inform Congress of efforts 
                      related to this section.''.
SEC. 6. SENSE OF CONGRESS ON HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION RELATED TO 
                    THE KOREAN PENINSULA.

    Title III of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 
7841 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:
``SEC. 306. <<NOTE: 22 USC 7846.>>  SENSE OF CONGRESS ON 
                        HUMANITARIAN COORDINATION RELATED TO THE 
                        KOREAN PENINSULA.

    ``It is the sense of Congress that--
            ``(1) any instability on the Korean Peninsula could have 
        significant humanitarian and strategic impact on the region and 
        for United States national interests; and
            ``(2) as such, the United States Government should work with 
        countries sharing a land or maritime border with North Korea to 
        develop long-term whole-of-government plans to coordinate 
        efforts related to humanitarian assistance and human rights 
        promotion and to effectively assimilate North Korean 
        defectors.''.
SEC. 7. REAUTHORIZATION PROVISIONS.

    (a) Support for Human Rights and Democracy Programs.--Section 102 of 
the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7812(b)(1)) is 
amended--
            (1) <<NOTE: President. Grants.>>  in subsection (a), by 
        adding at the end the following: ``The President is also 
        authorized to provide grants to entities to undertake research 
        on North Korea's denial of human rights, including on the 
        political and military chains of command responsible for 
        authorizing and implementing systemic human rights abuses, 
        including at prison camps and detention facilities where 
        political prisoners are held.''; and
            (2) in subsection (b)(1), by striking ``2017'' and inserting 
        ``2022''.

    (b) Actions To Promote Freedom of Information.--Section 104 of the 
North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7814) is amended--
            (1) in subsection (b)(1)--
                    (A) by striking ``$2,000,000'' and inserting 
                ``$3,000,000''; and
                    (B) by striking ``2017'' and inserting ``2022''; and
            (2) in subsection (c), by striking ``2017'' and inserting 
        ``2022''.

    (c) Report by Special Envoy on North Korean Human Rights Issues.--
Section 107(d) of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 
7817(d)) is amended by striking ``2017'' and inserting ``2022''.
    (d) Report on United States Humanitarian Assistance.--Section 201 of 
the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7831 is amended--

[[Page 132 STAT. 1524]]

            (1) in subsection (a), in the matter preceding paragraph 
        (1), by striking ``2017'' and inserting ``2022'';
            (2) by redesignating subsection (b) as subsection (c); and
            (3) by inserting after subsection (a) the following new 
        subsection:

    ``(b) Needs Assessment.--The report shall include a needs assessment 
to inform the distribution of humanitarian assistance inside North 
Korea.''.
    (e) Assistance Provided Outside of North Korea.--Section 203(c)(1) 
of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7833(c)(1)) is 
amended by striking ``2013 through 2017'' and inserting ``2018 through 
2022''.
    (f) Annual Reports.--Section 305(a) of the North Korean Human Rights 
Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7845(a)) is amended, in the matter preceding 
paragraph (1) by striking ``2017'' and inserting ``2022''.
SEC. 8. REPORT BY BROADCASTING BOARD OF GOVERNORS.

    (a) In General.--Not later than 120 days after the date of the 
enactment of this Act, the Broadcasting Board of Governors shall submit 
to the appropriate congressional committees a report that--
            (1) describes the status of current United States 
        broadcasting to North Korea and the extent to which the Board 
        has achieved the goal of 12-hour-per-day broadcasting to North 
        Korea, in accordance with section 103(a) of the North Korean 
        Human Rights Act of 2004 (22 U.S.C. 7813(a)); and
            (2) <<NOTE: Strategy.>>  includes a strategy to overcome 
        obstacles to such communication with the North Korean people, 
        including through unrestricted, unmonitored, and inexpensive 
        electronic means.

    (b) Form.--The report required under subsection (a) shall be 
submitted in unclassified form but may include a classified annex.
    (c) <<NOTE: Definition.>>  Appropriate Congressional Committees.--In 
this section, the term ``appropriate congressional committees'' means--
            (1) the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate;
            (2) the Committee on Appropriations of the Senate;
            (3) the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of 
        Representatives; and
            (4) the Committee on Appropriations of the House of 
        Representatives.

[[Page 132 STAT. 1525]]

SEC. 9. REPEAL OF DUPLICATIVE AUTHORIZATIONS.

    Section 403 of the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act 
of 2016 (Public Law 114-122; 22 U.S.C. 9253) is hereby repealed.

    Approved July 20, 2018.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 2061:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

CONGRESSIONAL RECORD:
                                                        Vol. 163 (2017):
                                    Sept. 25, considered and passed 
                                        House.
                                                        Vol. 164 (2018):
                                    Apr. 24, considered and passed 
                                        Senate, amended.
                                    June 27, House concurred in Senate 
                                        amendment.
DAILY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS (2018):
            July 20, Presidential statement.

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