Text: H.Res.676 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Engrossed in House (01/09/2018)

[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H. Res. 676 Engrossed in House (EH)]

H. Res. 676

                In the House of Representatives, U. S.,

                                                       January 9, 2018.
Whereas, on December 28, 2017, popular protests against the Iranian regime began 
        in the city of Mashad and rapidly spread throughout the country, in the 
        most significant anti-government protests in Iran since June 2009;
Whereas the protesters have expressed numerous economic grievances, including 
        the regime's widespread corruption and the Revolutionary Guard Corps' 
        control of the country's economy;
Whereas protesters have decried the regime's costly, destabilizing activities 
        abroad, including its support for terrorist groups such as Hezbollah and 
        the murderous Assad regime in Syria;
Whereas reports indicate that more than 1,000 Iranians have been arrested and 
        almost two dozen killed in connection with the protests;
Whereas the Iranian regime has shut down mobile internet access and has blocked 
        and pressured companies to cut off social media applications used by 
        activists to organize and publicize the protests;
Whereas Congress has provided authority to license the provision of 
        communications technology to Iran to improve the ability of the Iranian 
        people to speak freely;
Whereas, on January 1, 2018, regime officials threatened to crack down, with 
        Brigadier General Esmaeil Kowsari of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps 
        stating, ``If this situation continues, the officials will definitely 
        make some decisions and at that point this business will be finished.'';
Whereas Congress has provided authority to designate and sanction elements of 
        the Iranian regime involved in significant corruption and serious human 
        rights abuses;
Whereas Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps and its Basij militia have been 
        sanctioned by the United States for planning and carrying out serious 
        human rights abuses against the Iranian people, including for the cruel 
        and prolonged torture of political dissidents;
Whereas the regime has routinely violated the human rights of Iranian citizens, 
        including ongoing, systematic, and serious restrictions of freedom of 
        peaceful assembly and association and freedom of opinion and expression, 
        including the continuing closures of media outlets, arrests of 
        journalists, and the censorship of expression in online forums such as 
        blogs and websites;
Whereas the Department of State's 2016 Human Rights Report on Iran noted 
        ``severe restrictions on civil liberties, including the freedoms of 
        assembly, association, speech, religion, and press. Other human rights 
        problems included abuse of due process combined with use of capital 
        punishment for crimes that do not meet the requirements of due process, 
        as well as cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment; and 
        disregard for the physical integrity of persons, whom authorities 
        arbitrarily and unlawfully detained, tortured, or killed.'';
Whereas, on December 29, 2017, the Department of State strongly condemned the 
        arrest of peaceful protesters and noted that ``Iran's leaders have 
        turned a wealthy country with a rich history and culture into an 
        economically depleted rogue state whose chief exports are violence, 
        bloodshed, and chaos.'';
Whereas, on January 1, 2018, the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth 
        Affairs of the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson, stated that ``The UK is 
        watching events in Iran closely. We believe that there should be 
        meaningful debate about the legitimate and important issues the 
        protesters are raising and we look to the Iranian authorities to permit 
Whereas, on January 2, 2018, the French Foreign Ministry stated that ``French 
        authorities are closely monitoring the situation in Iran. Demonstrating 
        freely is a fundamental right. The same is true for the free movement of 
        information. France expresses its concern over the large number of 
        victims and arrests.'';
Whereas, on January 1, 2018, a spokesman for the Canadian Ministry of Foreign 
        Affairs stated that ``We call on the Iranian authorities to uphold and 
        respect democratic and human rights'' and ``We are encouraged by the 
        Iranian people who are bravely exercising their basic right to protest 
        peacefully. Canada will continue to support the fundamental rights of 
        the Iranians, including freedom of expression.'';
Whereas Iran is a member of the United Nations, voted for the Universal 
        Declaration of Human Rights, and is a signatory to the International 
        Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, among other international human 
        rights treaties; and
Whereas, in violation of these and other international obligations, Iranian 
        regime officials continue to violate the fundamental human rights of the 
        Iranian people: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved, That the House of Representatives--
            (1) stands with the people of Iran that are engaged in legitimate 
        and peaceful protests against an oppressive, corrupt regime;
            (2) condemns the Iranian regime's serious human rights abuses 
        against the Iranian people, significant corruption, and destabilizing 
        activities abroad;
            (3) notes the statements of support for the protestors from key 
        allies and calls on all democratic governments and institutions to 
        clearly support the Iranian people's right to live in a free society;
            (4) demands that the Iranian regime abide by its international 
        obligations with respect to human rights and civil liberties, including 
        freedoms of assembly, speech, and press;
            (5) urges the Administration to use targeted sanctions and work to 
        convene emergency sessions of the United Nations Security Council and 
        the United Nations Human Rights Council to condemn the ongoing human 
        rights violations perpetrated by the Iranian regime and establish a 
        mechanism by which the Security Council can monitor such violations;
            (6) encourages the Administration to expedite the license of 
        communications technology to Iran to improve the ability of the Iranian 
        people to speak freely;
            (7) calls on companies to reject requests by the regime to cut off 
        the Iranian people from social media and other communications platforms;
            (8) respects the proud history and rich culture of the Iranian 
        nation and fully supports efforts by the people of Iran to promote the 
        establishment of basic freedoms that build the foundation for the 
        emergence of a freely elected, open, and democratic political system; 
            (9) urges the President and the Secretary of State to work with the 
        international community to ensure that violations of human rights are 
        part of all formal and informal multilateral or bilateral discussions 
        with and regarding Iran.


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