Summary: S.1697 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Reported to Senate with amendment(s) (09/06/2017)

Taylor Force Act

(Sec. 3) This bill: (1) calls on the Palestinian Authority's (PA) to stop making payments to terrorists in Israeli prisons and to the families of deceased terrorists, (2) calls on countries to cease providing direct budgetary assistance to the PA until it stops all payments incentivizing terror, (3) urges the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations (U.N.) and the Department of State to highlight the issue and urge other nations to call for an end to such payments, and (4) expresses support for creation of a general welfare system for all Palestinian citizens.

(Sec. 4) Certain assistance under the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 that directly benefits the PA may not be made available for the West Bank and Gaza unless the State Department certifies that the PA:

  • is taking steps to end acts of violence against U.S. and Israeli citizens perpetrated by individuals under its jurisdictional control, such as the March 2016 attack that killed former Army officer Taylor Force;
  • has terminated payments for acts of terrorism against U.S. and Israeli citizens to any individual who has been fairly tried and imprisoned for such acts, to any individual who died committing such acts, and to family members of such an individual;
  • has revoked any law, decree, or document authorizing or implementing a system of compensation for imprisoned individuals that uses the sentence or incarceration period to determine compensation; and
  • is publicly condemning such acts and is taking steps to investigate or is cooperating in investigations to bring the perpetrators to justice.

This assistance limitation shall not apply to payments made to the East Jerusalem Hospital Network.

(Sec. 5) Certain assistance under such Act for the West Bank and Gaza may not be made available unless the State Department certifies every 180 days that the PA is taking verifiable steps to end acts of violence against Israeli and U.S. citizens by individuals under its jurisdictional control.

(Sec. 6) The bill establishes the Palestinian Authority Accountability Fund, which shall consist of amounts withheld under this bill. Such amounts may be made available upon a State Department certification that the PA has met the conditions for which they were withheld.

(Sec. 7) The State Department shall report to Congress annually with respect to: (1) PA expenditures as payments to individuals and families for acts of terrorism; (2) Palestinian laws, decrees, regulations, or documents that authorize or implement such payments and U.S. policy and engagement with the PA to confirm their revocation; and (3) U.S. policy and engagement with other governments and the U.N. to highlight such payments and urge other nations to join the United States in calling on the PA to end them.