Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Passed House amended (06/06/2017)

Iraq and Syria Genocide Relief and Accountability Act of 2017

(Sec. 4) This bill states that is U.S. policy to ensure that humanitarian, stabilization, and recovery assistance for nationals and residents of Iraq or Syria, and of communities from those countries, is directed toward ethnic and minority individuals and communities with the greatest need, including those individuals and communities that are at risk of persecution or war crimes.

(Sec. 5) The Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development may provide assistance, including financial and technical assistance, to support the efforts of entities, including nongovernmental organizations with expertise in international criminal investigations and law, to address crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, or war crimes in Iraq since January 2014 by:

  • conducting criminal investigations,
  • developing indigenous investigative and judicial skills to adjudicate cases consistent with due process and respect for the rule of law, and
  • collecting and preserving evidence for use in prosecutions.

The State Department shall encourage foreign governments to identify and prosecute individuals who are suspected of committing such crimes, including members of foreign terrorist organizations operating in Iraq or Syria.

(Sec. 6) The State Department shall identify:

  • threats of persecution, genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes against members of Iraqi or Syrian religious or ethnic groups that are minorities in Iraq or in Syria with respect to whom the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has committed such crimes in Iraq or Syria since January 2014 or who are members of other persecuted religious or ethnic groups;
  • persecuted religious and ethnic minority groups in Iraq or Syria that are at risk of forced migration and the primary reasons for such risk;
  • humanitarian, stabilization, and recovery needs of these individuals; and
  • entities, including faith-based entities, that are providing such assistance and the extent of U.S. assistance to or through such entities.

(Sec. 7) The State Department shall provide Congress with:

  • a description of the efforts taken and proposed to implement this bill; and
  • an assessment of the feasibility and advisability of prosecuting individuals for acts of genocide, crimes against humanity, or war crimes in Iraq since January 2014 or in Syria since March 2011.