Text: H.R.4681 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Referred in Senate (04/25/2018)

 
[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
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[H.R. 4681 Referred in Senate (RFS)]

<DOC>
115th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 4681


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                             April 25, 2018

Received; read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT


 
To limit assistance for areas of Syria controlled by the Government of 
          Syria or associated forces, 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 ``No Assistance for Assad Act''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:
            (1) Seven years into the conflict in Syria, over 11 million 
        Syrians have been displaced from their homes and more than 
        400,000 have been killed.
            (2) Since the conflict in Syria began, the United States 
        has provided more than $7.6 billion to meet humanitarian needs 
        of the Syrian people, making the United States the world's 
        single largest donor to the Syrian humanitarian response.
            (3) It is estimated that the reconstruction of Syria could 
        cost between $200 and $350 billion.
            (4) According to the 2016 Transparency International 
        Corruption Index, Syria is among the most corrupt countries in 
        the world.
            (5) In October 2015, a visiting Russian delegation to Syria 
        announced that Russian firms would lead in the effort to 
        rebuild Syria, and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad reportedly 
        said, ``Syria is ready to provide Russian companies with all 
        the contracts worth hundreds of billions of dollars.''.
            (6) In August 2017, the Government of the People's Republic 
        of China hosted a trade fair in Syria, and a Chinese-Arab 
        business group announced a $2 billion commitment from the 
        Chinese government to fund the construction of industrial parks 
        in Syria.

SEC. 3. STATEMENT OF POLICY.

    It is the policy of the United States that United States foreign 
assistance made available for early recovery, reconstruction, or 
stabilization in Syria should be used only in a democratic Syria or in 
areas of Syria not controlled by a government led by Bashar al-Assad or 
associated forces.

SEC. 4. LIMITATION ON ASSISTANCE FOR AREAS OF SYRIA CONTROLLED BY THE 
              GOVERNMENT OF SYRIA OR ASSOCIATED FORCES.

    (a) Limitation.--
            (1) In general.--Except as provided in subsection (c), for 
        each of the fiscal years 2019 through 2023, amounts authorized 
        to be appropriated or otherwise made available for assistance 
        described in paragraph (2) may not be provided, directly or 
        indirectly, for any area of Syria controlled by the Government 
        of Syria or associated forces, as determined by the Secretary 
        of State, unless a certification described in subsection (b) is 
        in effect.
            (2) Assistance described.--Assistance referred to in 
        paragraph (1) is the following:
                    (A) Assistance to carry out stabilization 
                activities for the relevant area.
                    (B) Assistance to carry out reconstruction 
                activities for the relevant area.
    (b) Certification.--
            (1) In general.--A certification described in this 
        subsection is a certification submitted by the President to the 
        appropriate congressional committees that contains a 
        determination that the Government of Syria--
                    (A) has ceased attacks against civilians and 
                civilian infrastructure as such, including attacks 
                against medical facilities and personnel, and the 
                indiscriminate use of weapons, including through 
                shelling and aerial bombardment, as demanded in United 
                Nations Security Council Resolution 2254 (2015);
                    (B) is taking verifiable steps to release all 
                political prisoners and is providing full access to 
                Syrian prisons for investigations by appropriate 
                international human rights organizations;
                    (C) is taking verifiable steps to remove from 
                government positions senior officials of the Government 
                of Syria who are complicit in the planning or 
                commission of war crimes, crimes against humanity, or 
                human rights abuses, as well as any government official 
                subject to sanctions under any provision of law;
                    (D) is organizing free and fair elections for a new 
                government to be held in a timely manner and under the 
                supervision of United Nations observers, with all 
                Syrians, including members of the diaspora, eligible to 
                participate, as supported in United Nations Security 
                Council Resolution 2254 (2015);
                    (E) is making tangible progress toward establishing 
                an independent judiciary;
                    (F) is demonstrating respect for and compliance 
                with internationally recognized human rights and basic 
                freedoms as specified in the Universal Declaration of 
                Human Rights;
                    (G) is taking steps to verifiably fulfill its 
                commitments under the Convention on the Prohibition of 
                the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of 
                Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction and the 
                Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, is 
                making tangible progress toward becoming a signatory to 
                the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, 
                Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological 
                (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on their 
                Destruction, and adhering to the Missile Technology 
                Control Regime and other control lists, as necessary;
                    (H) has halted the development and deployment of 
                ballistic and cruise missiles;
                    (I) is taking verifiable steps to remove from 
                positions of authority within the military, 
                intelligence, and security services those individuals 
                who were in a position of authority or responsibility 
                during the conflict, or who are in a position of 
                authority or responsibility during a transition, who 
                are determined to be responsible for or complicit in 
                the torture, extrajudicial killing, or execution of 
                civilians, to include those who were involved the 
                planning or execution of plans to use chemical weapons;
                    (J) is making verifiable progress in reforming the 
                Syrian military and security services so as to minimize 
                the Government of Syria's reliance on Iran and Iranian 
                proxy forces to act on behalf or in support of Syria; 
                and
                    (K) is in the process of organizing the safe and 
                voluntary return of Syrian refugees and internally 
                displaced persons to their homes so that Syrians may 
                return without fear of retribution by the Government of 
                Syria or associated forces.
            (2) Effective period.--A certification shall be in effect 
        under this subsection for a period of 90 days beginning on the 
        date on which the President submits the certification to the 
        appropriate congressional committees.
            (3) Renewal or report.--Not later than 90 days after the 
        date on which the President submits to the appropriate 
        congressional committees a certification under this subsection 
        the President shall submit to the appropriate congressional 
        committees either--
                    (A) a new certification under this subsection 
                indicating that the conditions described in paragraph 
                (1) are continuing to be met; or
                    (B) a report that--
                            (i) describes why the President is unable 
                        to make a new certification under this 
                        subsection; and
                            (ii) contains a certification that no funds 
                        will be obligated or expended to provide 
                        assistance described in subsection (a) in 
                        contravention of subsection (a).
    (c) Exception.--
            (1) In general.--The limitation on assistance under 
        subsection (a) shall not apply with respect to--
                    (A) assistance for projects to be administered by 
                local organizations that reflect the aims, needs, and 
                priorities of local communities in Syria;
                    (B) assistance for projects to meet basic human 
                needs in Syria, including--
                            (i) drought relief;
                            (ii) assistance to refugees, internally 
                        displaced persons, and conflict victims;
                            (iii) the distribution of food and 
                        medicine; and
                            (iv) the provision of health services; and
                    (C) assistance to carry out the activities 
                described in subsection (b)(1)(G).
            (2) Report and determination.--The President shall submit 
        to the appropriate congressional committees a report and 
        determination for each of the fiscal years 2019 through 2023 on 
        each project with respect to which this subsection applies 
        during the preceding fiscal year, including--
                    (A) a description of the project;
                    (B) a description of how United States funds with 
                respect to the project were used;
                    (C) the geographic location or locations of the 
                project; and
                    (D) a determination with respect to whether the 
                project benefited an official of the Assad regime.
            (3) Sense of congress.--It is the sense of Congress that, 
        to the greatest extent practicable, the United States should 
        not fund projects described in this subsection with respect to 
        which the Government of Syria, any official of the Government 
        of Syria, and any immediate family member of an official of the 
        Government of Syria have a financial or material interest or 
        are affiliated with the implementing partner of the project.
    (d) Definitions.--In this section:
            (1) Appropriate congressional committees.--The term 
        ``appropriate congressional committees'' means--
                    (A) the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the 
                Committee on Appropriations of the House of 
                Representatives; and
                    (B) the Committee on Foreign Relations and the 
                Committee on Appropriations of the Senate.
            (2) Associated forces.--The term ``associated forces'' 
        includes forces of the Government of the Russian Federation, 
        the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Iranian-backed 
        proxy militias, and Hezbollah.
            (3) Directly or indirectly.--The term ``directly or 
        indirectly'' includes assistance to multilateral institutions 
        and international governmental organizations, such as the 
        United Nations and related agencies, the International Monetary 
        Fund, and the World Bank.

SEC. 5. REPORT ON DELIVERY OF UNITED STATES HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE TO 
              SYRIA.

    (a) In General.--Not later than 180 days after the date of the 
enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State and the Administrator of 
the United States Agency for International Development shall submit to 
the appropriate congressional committees a report on delivery of United 
States humanitarian assistance to Syria.
    (b) Matters To Be Included.--The report required by subsection (a) 
shall include the following:
            (1) A description of the challenges of access to areas of 
        Syria controlled by the Government of Syria or associated 
        forces for purposes of providing United States humanitarian 
        assistance, including assistance funded through multilateral 
        institutions and international governmental organizations.
            (2) A description of where such United States humanitarian 
        assistance has been able to be delivered in such areas.
            (3) A description of where such United States humanitarian 
        assistance has been denied access in such areas.
            (4) A description of how the United States Government is 
        working to improve access to such areas.
            (5) A description of the roles and responsibilities of 
        United States allies and partners and other countries in the 
        region in ensuring access to such areas.
            (6) A description of how such United States humanitarian 
        assistance and implementing partners of such assistance are 
        monitored and evaluated.
            (7) A description of the major challenges that the United 
        States faces in monitoring such United States humanitarian 
        assistance and how the United States is working to overcome 
        such challenges.
            (8) A description of the strategy of the United States to 
        deliver humanitarian assistance to areas of Syria controlled by 
        the Government of Syria or associated forces and in which the 
        Government of Syria or associated forces is impeding access to 
        such areas.
    (c) Definitions.--In this section, the term ``appropriate 
congressional committees'' and ``associated forces'' have the meanings 
given such terms in section 4(f).

            Passed the House of Representatives April 24, 2018.

            Attest:

                                                 KAREN L. HAAS,

                                                                 Clerk.

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