Authorizing Legislation & Amendments

International Religious Freedom Act of 1998

Public Law 105-292, as amended by Public Law 106-55, Public Law 106-113, Public Law 107-228, Public Law 108-332, Public Law 108-458, and Public Law 112-75.

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

(a) SHORT TITLE.--This Act may be cited as the “International Religious Freedom Act of 1998”. [22 USC 6401 note.]

(b) TABLE OF CONTENTS. -- [omitted, no longer accurate after 1999 amendments]

TITLE I--DEPARTMENT OF STATE ACTIVITIES

Sec. 101.Office on International Religious Freedom; Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom.

Sec. 102. Reports.

Sec. 103. Establishment of a religious freedom Internet site.

Sec. 104. Training for Foreign Service officers.

Sec. 105. Highlevel contacts with nongovernmental organizations.

Sec. 106. Programs and allocations of funds by United States missions abroad.

Sec. 107. Equal access to United States missions abroad for conducting religious activities.

Sec. 108. Prisoner lists and issue briefs on religious freedom concerns.

TITLE II--COMMISSION ON INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

Sec. 201. Establishment and composition.

Sec. 202. Duties of the Commission.

Sec. 203. Report of the Commission.

Sec. 204. Applicability of other laws.

Sec. 205. Authorization of appropriations.

Sec. 206. Termination.

TITLE III--NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL

Sec. 301. Special Adviser on International Religious Freedom.

TITLE IV--PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS

Subtitle I--Targeted Responses to Violations of Religious Freedom Abroad

Sec. 401. Presidential actions in response to violations of religious freedom.

Sec. 402. Presidential actions in response to particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

Sec. 403. Consultations.

Sec. 404. Report to Congress.

Sec. 405. Description of Presidential actions.

Sec. 406. Effects on existing contracts.

Sec. 407. Presidential waiver.

Sec. 408. Publication in Federal Register.

Sec. 409. Termination of Presidential actions.

Sec. 410. Preclusion of judicial review.

Subtitle II--Strengthening Existing Law

Sec. 421. United States assistance.

Sec. 422. Multilateral assistance.

Sec. 423. Exports of certain items used in particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

TITLE V--PROMOTION OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

Sec. 501. Assistance for promoting religious freedom.

Sec. 502. International broadcasting.

Sec. 503. International exchanges.

Sec. 504. Foreign Service awards.

TITLE VI--REFUGEE, ASYLUM, AND CONSULAR MATTERS

Sec. 601. Use of Annual Report.

Sec. 602. Reform of refugee policy.

Sec. 603. Reform of asylum policy.

Sec. 604. Inadmissibility of foreign government officials who have engaged in particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

Sec. 605. Studies on the effect of expedited removal provisions on asylum claims.

TITLE VII--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Sec. 701. Business codes of conduct.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS; POLICY. [22 USC 6401.]

(a) FINDINGS.--Congress makes the following findings:

(1) The right to freedom of religion undergirds the very origin and existence of the United States. Many of our Nation's founders fled religious persecution abroad, cherishing in their hearts and minds the ideal of religious freedom. They established in law, as a fundamental right and as a pillar of our Nation, the right to freedom of religion. From its birth to this day, the United States has prized this legacy of religious freedom and honored this heritage by standing for religious freedom and offering refuge to those suffering religious persecution.

(2) Freedom of religious belief and practice is a universal human right and fundamental freedom articulated in numerous international instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Helsinki Accords, the Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, the United Nations Charter, and the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

(3) Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes that ``Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion. This right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship, and observance.''. Article 18(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights recognizes that ``Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience, and religion. This right shall include freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice, and teaching''. Governments have the responsibility to protect the fundamental rights of their citizens and to pursue justice for all. Religious freedom is a fundamental right of every individual, regardless of race, sex, country, creed, or nationality, and should never be arbitrarily abridged by any government.

(4) The right to freedom of religion is under renewed and, in some cases, increasing assault in many countries around the world. More than one-half of the world's population lives under regimes that severely restrict or prohibit the freedom of their citizens to study, believe, observe, and freely practice the religious faith of their choice. Religious believers and communities suffer both government-sponsored and government-tolerated violations of their rights to religious freedom. Among the many forms of such violations are state-sponsored slander campaigns, confiscations of property, surveillance by security police, including by special divisions of ``religious police'', severe prohibitions against construction and repair of places of worship, denial of the right to assemble and relegation of religious communities to illegal status through arbitrary registration laws, prohibitions against the pursuit of education or public office, and prohibitions against publishing, distributing, or possessing religious literature and materials.

(5) Even more abhorrent, religious believers in many countries face such severe and violent forms of religious persecution as detention, torture, beatings, forced marriage, rape, imprisonment, enslavement, mass resettlement, and death merely for the peaceful belief in, change of or practice of their faith. In many countries, religious believers are forced to meet secretly, and religious leaders are targeted by national security forces and hostile mobs.

(6) Though not confined to a particular region or regime, religious persecution is often particularly widespread, systematic, and heinous under totalitarian governments and in countries with militant, politicized religious majorities.

(7) Congress has recognized and denounced acts of religious persecution through the adoption of the following resolutions:

(A) House Resolution 515 of the One Hundred Fourth Congress, expressing the sense of the House of Representatives with respect to the persecution of Christians worldwide.

(B) Senate Concurrent Resolution 71 of the One Hundred Fourth Congress, expressing the sense of the Senate regarding persecution of Christians worldwide.

(C) House Concurrent Resolution 102 of the One Hundred Fourth Congress, expressing the sense of the House of Representatives concerning the emancipation of the Iranian Baha'i community.

(b) POLICY.--It shall be the policy of the United States, as follows:

(1) To condemn violations of religious freedom, and to promote, and to assist other governments in the promotion of, the fundamental right to freedom of religion.

(2) To seek to channel United States security and development assistance to governments other than those found to be engaged in gross violations of the right to freedom of religion, as set forth in the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, in the International Financial Institutions Act of 1977, and in other formulations of United States human rights policy.

(3) To be vigorous and flexible, reflecting both the unwavering commitment of the United States to religious freedom and the desire of the United States for the most effective and principled response, in light of the range of violations of religious freedom by a variety of persecuting regimes, and the status of the relations of the United States with different nations.

(4) To work with foreign governments that affirm and protect religious freedom, in order to develop multilateral documents and initiatives to combat violations of religious freedom and promote the right to religious freedom abroad.

(5) Standing for liberty and standing with the persecuted, to use and implement appropriate tools in the United States foreign policy apparatus, including diplomatic, political, commercial, charitable, educational, and cultural channels, to promote respect for religious freedom by all governments and peoples.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS. [22 USC 6402.]

In this Act:

(1) AMBASSADOR AT LARGE.--The term “Ambassador at Large” means the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom appointed under section 101(b).

(2) ANNUAL REPORT.--The term “Annual Report” means the Annual Report on International Religious Freedom described in section 102(b).

(3) APPROPRIATE CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES.--The term “appropriate congressional committees” means --

(A) the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on International Relations of the House of Representatives; and

(B) in the case of any determination made with respect to the taking of President action under paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a), the term includes the committees described in subparagraph (A) and, where appropriate, the Committee on Banking and Financial Services of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate.

(4) COMMENSURATE ACTION.--The term “commensurate action” means action taken by the President under section 405(b).

(5) COMMISSION.--The term “Commission” means the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom established in section 201(a).

(6) COUNTRY REPORTS ON HUMAN RIGHTS PRACTICES.--The term “Country Reports on Human Rights Practices” means the annual reports required to be submitted by the Department of State to Congress under sections 116(d) and 502B(b) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.

(7) EXECUTIVE SUMMARY.--The term “Executive Summary” means the Executive Summary to the Annual Report, as described in section 102(b)(1)(F).

(8) GOVERNMENT OR FOREIGN GOVERNMENT.--The term “government” or “foreign government” includes any agency or instrumentality of the government.

(9) HUMAN RIGHTS REPORTS.--The term “Human Rights Reports” means all reports submitted by the Department of State to Congress under sections 116 and 502B of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.

(10) OFFICE.--The term “Office” means the Office on International Religious Freedom established in section 101(a).

(11) PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--The term “particularly severe violations of religious freedom” means systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom, including violations such as --

(A) torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment;

(B) prolonged detention without charges;

(C) causing the disappearance of persons by the abduction or clandestine detention of those persons; or

(D) other flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, or the security of persons.

(12) SPECIAL ADVISER.--The term ``Special Adviser'' means the Special Adviser to the President on International Religious Freedom described in section 101(i) of the National Security Act of 1947, as added by section 301 of this Act.

(13) VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--The term “violations of religious freedom” means violations of the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion and religious belief and practice, as set forth in the international instruments referred to in section 2(a)(2) and as described in section 2(a)(3), including violations such as --

(A) arbitrary prohibitions on, restrictions of, or punishment for--

(i) assembling for peaceful religious activities such as worship, preaching, and prayer, including arbitrary registration requirements;

(ii) speaking freely about one's religious beliefs;

(iii) changing one's religious beliefs and affiliation;

(iv) possession and distribution of religious literature, including Bibles; or

(v) raising one's children in the religious teachings and practices of one's choice; or

(B) any of the following acts if committed on account of an individual's religious belief or practice: detention, interrogation, imposition of an onerous financial penalty, forced labor, forced mass resettlement, imprisonment, forced religious conversion, beating, torture, mutilation, rape, enslavement, murder, and execution.

TITLE I--DEPARTMENT OF STATE ACTIVITIES

SEC. 101. OFFICE ON INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM; AMBASSADOR AT LARGE FOR INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. [22 USC 6411.]

(a) ESTABLISHMENT OF OFFICE.--There is established within the Department of State an Office on International Religious Freedom that shall be headed by the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom appointed under subsection (b).

(b) APPOINTMENT.--The Ambassador at Large shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.

(c) DUTIES.--The Ambassador at Large shall have the following responsibilities:

(1) IN GENERAL.--The primary responsibility of the Ambassador at Large shall be to advance the right to freedom of religion abroad, to denounce the violation of that right, and to recommend appropriate responses by the United States Government when this right is violated.

(2) ADVISORY.--The Ambassador at Large shall be a principal adviser to the President and the Secretary of State regarding matters affecting religious freedom abroad and, with advice from the Commission on International Religious Freedom, shall make recommendations regarding

(A) the policies of the United States Government toward governments that violate freedom of religion or that fail to ensure the individual's right to religious belief and practice; and

(B) policies to advance the right to religious freedom abroad.

(3) DIPLOMATIC REPRESENTATION.--Subject to the direction of the President and the Secretary of State, the Ambassador at Large is authorized to represent the United States in matters and cases relevant to religious freedom abroad in--

(A) contacts with foreign governments, intergovernmental organizations, and specialized agencies of the United Nations, the Organization on Security and Cooperation in Europe, and other international organizations of which the United States is a member; and

(B) multilateral conferences and meetings relevant to religious freedom abroad.

(4) REPORTING RESPONSIBILITIES.--The Ambassador at Large shall have the reporting responsibilities described in section 102.

(d) FUNDING.--The Secretary of State shall provide the Ambassador at Large with such funds as may be necessary for the hiring of staff for the Office, for the conduct of investigations by the Office, and for necessary travel to carry out the provisions of this section.

SEC. 102. REPORTS. [22 USC 6412.]

(a) PORTIONS OF ANNUAL HUMAN RIGHTS REPORTS.--The Ambassador at Large shall assist the Secretary of State in preparing those portions of the Human Rights Reports that relate to freedom of religion and freedom from discrimination based on religion and those portions of other information provided Congress under sections 116 and 502B of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151m, 2304) that relate to the right to freedom of religion.

(b) ANNUAL REPORT ON INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION.--On September 1 of each year or the first day thereafter on which the appropriate House of Congress is in session, the Secretary of State, with the assistance of the Ambassador at Large, and taking into consideration the recommendations of the Commission, shall prepare and transmit to Congress an Annual Report on International Religious Freedom supplementing the most recent Human Rights Reports by providing additional detailed information with respect to matters involving international religious freedom. Each Annual Report shall contain the following:

(A) STATUS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--A description of the status of religious freedom in each foreign country, including--

(i) trends toward improvement in the respect and protection of the right to religious freedom and trends toward deterioration of such right;

(ii) violations of religious freedom engaged in or tolerated by the government of that country;

(iii) particularly severe violations of religious freedom engaged in or tolerated by the government of that country; and

(iv) wherever applicable, an assessment and description of the nature and extent of acts of anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic incitement that occur in that country during the preceding year, including--

(I) acts of physical violence against, or harassment of, Jewish people, acts of violence against, or vandalism of, Jewish community institutions, and instances of propaganda in government and nongovernment media that incite such acts; and

(II) the actions taken by the government of that country to respond to such violence and attacks or to eliminate such propaganda or incitement, to enact and enforce laws relating to the protection of the right to religious freedom of Jewish people, and to promote anti-bias and tolerance education.

(B) VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--An assessment and description of the nature and extent of violations of religious freedom in each foreign country, including persecution of one religious group by another religious group, religious persecution by governmental and nongovernmental entities, persecution targeted at individuals or particular denominations or entire religions, the existence of government policies violating religious freedom, including policies that discriminate against particular religious groups or members of such groups, and the existence of government policies concerning

(i) limitations or prohibitions on, or lack of availability of, openly conducted, organized religious services outside of the premises of foreign diplomatic missions or consular posts; and

(ii) the forced religious conversion of minor United States citizens who have been abducted or illegally removed from the United States, and the refusal to allow such citizens to be returned to the United States.

(C) UNITED STATES POLICIES.--A description of United States actions and policies in support of religious freedom in each foreign country engaging in or tolerating violations of religious freedom, including a description of the measures and policies implemented during the preceding 12 months by the United States under titles I, IV, and V of this Act in opposition to violations of religious freedom and in support of international religious freedom.

(D) INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--A description of any binding agreement with a foreign government entered into by the United States under section 401(b) or 402(c).

(E) TRAINING AND GUIDELINES--A description of--

(i) the training described in section 602(a) and (b) and section 603(b) and (c) on violations of religious freedom provided to immigration judges and consular, refugee, immigration, and asylum officers; and

(ii) the development and implementation of the guidelines described in sections 602(c) and 603(a).

(F) EXECUTIVE SUMMARY.--An Executive Summary to the Annual Report highlighting the status of religious freedom in certain foreign countries and including the following:

(i) COUNTRIES IN WHICH THE UNITED STATES IS ACTIVELY PROMOTING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--An identification of foreign countries in which the United States is actively promoting religious freedom. This section of the report shall include a description of United States actions taken to promote the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion and oppose violations of such right under title IV and title V of this Act during the period covered by the Annual Report. Any country designated as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under section 402(b)(1) shall be included in this section of the report.

(ii) COUNTRIES OF SIGNIFICANT IN RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--An identification of foreign countries the governments of which have demonstrated significant improvement in the protection and promotion of the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion during the period covered by the Annual Report. This section of the report shall include a description of the nature of the improvement and an analysis of the factors contributing to such improvement, including actions taken by the United States under this Act.

(2) CLASSIFIED ADDENDUM.--If the Secretary of State determines that it is in the national security interests of the United States or is necessary for the safety of individuals to be identified in the Annual Report or is necessary to further the purposes of this Act, any information required by paragraph (1), including measures or actions taken by the United States, may be summarized in the Annual Report or the Executive Summary and submitted in more detail in a classified addendum to the Annual Report or the Executive Summary.

(c) PREPARATION OF REPORTS REGARDING VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) STANDARDS AND INVESTIGATIONS.--The Secretary of State shall ensure that United States missions abroad maintain a consistent reporting standard and thoroughly investigate reports of violations of the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion.

(2) CONTACTS WITH NONGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS.--In compiling data and assessing the respect of the right to religious freedom for the Human Rights Reports, the Annual Report on International Religious Freedom, and the Executive Summary, United States mission personnel shall, as appropriate, seek out and maintain contacts with religious and human rights nongovernmental organizations, with the consent of those organizations, including receiving reports and updates from such organizations and, when appropriate, investigating such reports.

(d) AMENDMENTS TO THE FOREIGN ASSISTANCE ACT OF 1961.--

(1) CONTENT OF HUMAN RIGHTS REPORTS FOR COUNTRIES RECEIVING ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE.--Section 116(d) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151n(d)) is amended--

(A) by striking “and” at the end of paragraph (4);

(B) by striking the period at the end of paragraph (5) and inserting “;and”; and

(C) by adding at the end the following:

“(6) wherever applicable, violations of religious freedom, including particularly severe violations of religious freedom (as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998).”.

(2) CONTENTS OF HUMAN RIGHTS REPORTS FOR COUNTRIES RECEIVING SECURITY ASSISTANCE.--Section 502B(b) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2304(b)) is amended--

(A) by inserting “and with the assistance of the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom” after “Labor”; and

(B) by inserting after the second sentence the following new sentence: “Such report shall also include, wherever applicable, information on violations of religious freedom, including particularly severe violations of religious freedom (as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998).”.

SEC. 103. ESTABLISHMENT OF A RELIGIOUS FREEDOM INTERNET SITE. [22 USC 6413.]

In order to facilitate access by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and by the public around the world to international documents on the protection of religious freedom, the Secretary of State, with the assistance of the Ambassador at Large, shall establish and maintain an Internet site containing major international documents relating to religious freedom, the Annual Report, the Executive Summary, and any other documentation or references to other sites as deemed appropriate or relevant by the Ambassador at Large.

SEC. 104. TRAINING FOR FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICERS.

Chapter 2 of title I of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 is amended by adding at the end the following new section:

“SEC. 708. TRAINING FOR FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICERS. [22 USC 4028.]

“The Secretary of State, with the assistance of other relevant officials, such as the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom appointed under section 101(b) of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 and the director of the National Foreign Affairs Training Center, shall establish as part of the standard training provided after January 1, 1999, for officers of the Service, including chiefs of mission, instruction in the field of internationally recognized human rights. Such training shall include--

“(1) instruction on international documents and United States policy in human rights, which shall be mandatory for all members of the Service having reporting responsibilities relating to human rights and for chiefs of mission; and

“(2) instruction on the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion, the nature, activities, and beliefs of different religions, and the various aspects and manifestations of violations of religious freedom.”.

SEC. 105. HIGH-LEVEL CONTACTS WITH NONGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS. [22 USC 6414.]

United States chiefs of mission shall seek out and contact religious nongovernmental organizations to provide high-level meetings with religious nongovernmental organizations where appropriate and beneficial. United States chiefs of mission and Foreign Service officers abroad shall seek to meet with imprisoned religious leaders where appropriate and beneficial.

SEC. 106. PROGRAMS AND ALLOCATIONS OF FUNDS BY UNITED STATES MISSIONS ABROAD. [22 USC 6415.]

It is the sense of the Congress that--

(1) United States diplomatic missions in countries the governments of which engage in or tolerate violations of the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion should develop, as part of annual program planning, a strategy to promote respect for the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion; and

(2) in allocating or recommending the allocation of funds or the recommendation of candidates for programs and grants funded by the United States Government, United States diplomatic missions should give particular consideration to those programs and candidates deemed to assist in the promotion of the right to religious freedom.

SEC. 107. EQUAL ACCESS TO UNITED STATES MISSIONS ABROAD FOR CONDUCTING RELIGIOUS ACTIVITIES. [22 USC 6416.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--Subject to this section, the Secretary of State shall permit, on terms no less favorable than that accorded other nongovernmental activities unrelated to the conduct of the diplomatic mission, access to the premises of any United States diplomatic mission or consular post by any United States citizen seeking to conduct an activity for religious purposes.

(b) TIMING AND LOCATION.--The Secretary of State shall make reasonable accommodations with respect to the timing and location of such access in light of--

(1) the number of United States citizens requesting the access (including any particular religious concerns regarding the time of day, date, or physical setting for services);

(2) conflicts with official activities and other nonofficial United States citizen requests;

(3) the availability of openly conducted, organized religious services outside the premises of the mission or post;

(4) availability of space and resources; and

(5) necessary security precautions.

(c) DISCRETIONARY ACCESS FOR FOREIGN NATIONALS.--The Secretary of State may permit access to the premises of a United States diplomatic mission or consular post to foreign nationals for the purpose of attending or participating in religious activities conducted pursuant to this section.

SEC. 108. PRISONER LISTS AND ISSUE BRIEFS ON RELIGIOUS FREEDOM CONCERNS. [22 USC 6417.]

(a) SENSE OF THE CONGRESS.--To encourage involvement with religious freedom concerns at every possible opportunity and by all appropriate representatives of the United States Government, it is the sense of the Congress that officials of the executive branch of Government should promote increased advocacy on such issues during meetings between foreign dignitaries and executive branch officials or Members of Congress.

(b) PRISONER LISTS AND ISSUE BRIEFS OM RELIGIOUS FREEDOM CONCERNS.--The Secretary of State, in consultation with the Ambassador at Large, the Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, United States chiefs of mission abroad, regional experts, and nongovernmental human rights and religious groups, shall prepare and maintain issue briefs on religious freedom, on a country-by-country basis, consisting of lists of persons believed to be imprisoned, detained, or placed under house arrest for their religious faith, together with brief evaluations and critiques of the policies of the respective country restricting religious freedom. In considering the inclusion of names of prisoners on such lists, the Secretary of State shall exercise appropriate discretion, including concerns regarding the safety, security, and benefit to such prisoners.

(c) AVAILABILITY OF INFORMATION.--The Secretary shall, as appropriate, provide religious freedom issue briefs under subsection (b) to executive branch officials and Members of Congress in anticipation of bilateral contacts with foreign leaders, both in the United States and abroad.

TITLE II--COMMISSION ON

INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

SEC. 201. ESTABLISHMENT AND COMPOSITION. [22 USC 6431.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--There is established the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom.

(b) MEMBERSHIP.--

(1) APPOINTMENT.--The Commission shall be composed of--

(A) the Ambassador at Large, who shall serve ex officio as a nonvoting member of the Commission; and

(B) Nine other members, who shall be United States citizens who are not being paid as officers or employees of the United States, and who shall be appointed as follows:

(i) Three members of the Commission shall be appointed by the President.

(ii) Three members of the Commission shall be appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate, of which two of the members shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the leader in the Senate of the political party that is not the political party of the President, and of which one of the members shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the leader in the Senate of the other political party.

(iii) Three members of the Commission shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, of which two of the members shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the leader in the House of the political party that is not the political party of the President, and of which one of the members shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the leader in the House of the other political party.

(2) SELECTION.--

(A) IN GENERAL.--Members of the Commission shall be selected among distinguished individuals noted for their knowledge and experience in fields relevant to the issue of international religious freedom, including foreign affairs, direct experience abroad, human rights, and international law.

(B) SECURITY CLEARANCES.--Each member of the Commission shall be required to obtain a security clearance.

(3) TIME OF APPOINTMENT.--The appointments required by paragraph (1) shall be made not later than 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(c) TERMS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--The term of office of each member of the Commission shall be 2 years. An individual, including any member appointed to the Commission prior to the date of the enactment of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom Reform and Reauthorization Act of 2011, shall not serve more than 2 terms as a member of the Commission under any circumstance. For any member serving on the Commission on such date who has completed at least 2 full terms on the Commission, such member’s term shall expire 90 days after such date. A member of the Commission may not serve after the expiration of that member’s term.

(2) ESTABLISHMENT OF STAGGERED TERMS.--

(A) IN GENERAL.--Notwithstanding paragraph (1), members of the Commission appointed to serve on the Commission during the period May 15, 2003, through May 14, 2005, shall be appointed to terms in accordance with the provisions of this paragraph.
(B) PRESIDENTIAL APPOINTMENTS.--Of the three members of the Commission appointed by the President under subsection (b)(1)(B)(i), two shall be appointed to a 1-year term and one shall be appointed to a 2-year term.
(C) APPOINTMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT PRO TEMPORE OF THE SENATE.--Of the three members of the Commission appointed by the President pro tempore of the Senate under subsection (b)(1)(B)(ii), one of the appointments made upon the recommendation of the leader in the Senate of the political party that is not the political party of the President shall be appointed to a 1-year term, and the other two appointments under such clause shall be 2-year terms.
(D) APPOINTMENTS BY THE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.--Of the three members of the Commission appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives under subsection (b)(1)(B)(iii), one of the appointments made upon the recommendation of the leader in the House of the political party that is not the political party of the President shall be to a 1-year term, and the other two appointments under such clause shall be 2-year terms.
(E) APPOINTMENTS TO 1-YEAR TERMS.--The term of each member of the Commission appointed to a 1-year term shall be considered to have begun on May 15, 2003, and shall end on May 14, 2004, regardless of the date of the appointment to the Commission. Each vacancy which occurs upon the expiration of the term of a member appointed to a 1-year term shall be filled by the appointment of a successor to a 2-year term.
(F) APPOINTMENTS TO 2-YEAR TERMS.--Each appointment of a member to a two-year term shall identify the member succeeded thereby, and each such term shall end on May 14 of the year that is at least two years after the expiration of the previous term, regardless of the date of the appointment to the Commission.

(3) INELIGIBILITY FOR REAPPOINTMENT.--If a member of the Commission attends, by being physically present or by conference call, less than 75 percent of the meetings of the Commission during one of that member’s terms on the Commission, the member shall not be eligible for reappointment tothe Commission.

(d) ELECTION OF CHAIR.--At the first meeting of the Commission after May 30 of each year, a majority of the members of the Commission present and voting shall elect the Chair of the Commission. No member of the Commission is eligible to be elected as Chair of the Commission for a second, consecutive term.

(e) QUORUM.--Six voting members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum for purposes of transacting business.

(f) MEETINGS.--Each year, within 15 days, or as soon as practicable, after the issuance of the Country Report on Human Rights Practices, the Commission shall convene. The Commission shall otherwise meet at the call of the Chair or, if no Chair has been elected for that calendar year, at the call of six voting members of the Commission.

(g) VACANCIES.--Any vacancy of the Commission shall not affect its powers, but shall be filled in the manner in which the original appointment was made. A member may serve after the expiration of that member's term until a successor has taken office. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring before the expiration of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed shall be appointed only for the remainder of that term.

(h) ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT.--The Administrator of General Services shall provide to the Commission on a reimbursable basis (or, in the discretion of the Administrator, on a non-reimbursable basis) such administrative support services as the Commission may request to carry out the provisions of this title.

(i) FUNDING.--Members of the Commission shall be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence at rates authorized for employees of agencies under subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code, while away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the Commission. Members of the Commission are subject to the requirements set forth in chapters 300 through 304 of title 41, Code of Federal Regulations (commonly known as the ‘Federal Travel Regulation’) and the Department of State Standardized Regulations governing authorized travel at government expense, including regulations concerning the mode of travel, lodging and per diem expenditures, reimbursement payments, and expense reporting and documentation requirements.

SEC. 202. DUTIES OF THE COMMISSION. [22 USC 6432.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--The Commission shall have as its primary responsibility--

(1) the annual and ongoing review of the facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom presented in the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, the Annual Report, and the Executive Summary, as well as information from other sources as appropriate; and

(2) the making of policy recommendations to the President, the Secretary of State, and Congress with respect to matters involving international religious freedom.

(b) POLICY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS IN RESPONSE TO VIOLATIONS.--The Commission, in evaluating United States Government policies in response to violations of religious freedom, shall consider and recommend options for policies of the United States Government with respect to each foreign country the government of which has engaged in or tolerated violations of religious freedom, including particularly severe violations of religious freedom, including diplomatic inquiries, diplomatic protest, official public protest demarche of protest, condemnation within multilateral fora, delay or cancellation of cultural or scientific exchanges, delay or cancellation of working, official, or state visits, reduction of certain assistance funds, termination of certain assistance funds, imposition of targeted trade sanctions, imposition of broad trade sanctions, and withdrawal of the chief of mission.

(c) POLICY REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS IN RESPONSE TO PROGRESS.--The Commission, in evaluating the United States Government policies with respect to countries found to be taking deliberate steps and making significant improvement in respect for the right of religious freedom, shall consider and recommend policy options, including private commendation, diplomatic commendation, official public commendation, commendation within multilateral fora, an increase in cultural or scientific exchanges, or both, termination or reduction of existing Presidential actions, an increase in certain assistance funds, and invitations for working, official, or state visits.

(d) EFFECTS ON RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES AND INDIVIDUALS.--Together with specific policy recommendations provided under subsections (b) and (c), the Commission shall also indicate its evaluation of the potential effects of such policies, if implemented, on the religious communities and individuals whose rights are found to be violated in the country in question.

(e) MONITORING.--The Commission shall, on an ongoing basis, monitor facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom, in consultation with independent human rights groups and nongovernmental organizations, including churches and other religious communities, and make such recommendations as may be necessary to the appropriate officials and offices in the United States Government.

SEC. 203. POWERS OF THE COMMISSION. [22 USC 6432a.]

(a) HEARINGS AND SESSIONS.--The Commission may, for the purpose of carrying out its duties under this title, hold hearings, sit and act at times and places in the United States, take testimony and receive evidence as the Commission considers advisable to carry out the purposes of this Act.

(b) INFORMATION FROM FEDERAL AGENCIES.--The Commission may secure directly from any Federal department or agency such information as the Commission considers necessary to carry out the provisions of this section. Upon request of the Chairperson of the Commission, the head of such department or agency shall furnish such information to the Commission, subject to applicable law.

(c) POSTAL SERVICES.--The Commission may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as other departments and agencies of the Federal Government.

(d) ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES.--The Commission may adopt such rules and regulations, relating to administrative procedure, as may be reasonably necessary to enable it to carry out the provisions of this title.

(e) VIEWS OF THE COMMISSION.--The Members of the Commission may speak in their capacity as private citizens. Statements on behalf of the Commission shall be issued in writing over the names of the Members. The Commission shall in its written statements clearly describe its statutory authority, distinguishing that authority from that of appointed or elected officials of the United States Government. Oral statements, where practicable, shall include a similar description.

(f) TRAVEL.--The Members of the Commission may, with the approval of the Commission, conduct such travel as is necessary to carry out the purpose of this title. Each trip must be approved by a majority of the Commission. This provision shall not apply to the AmbassadoratLarge, whose travel shall not require approval by the Commission.

SEC. 204. COMMISSION PERSONNEL MATTERS. [22 USC 6432b.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--The Commission may, without regard to the civil service laws and regulations, appoint and terminate an Executive Director and such other additional personnel as may be necessary to enable the Commission to perform its duties. The decision to employ or terminate an Executive Director shall be made by an affirmative vote of at least six of the nine members of the Commission.

(b) COMPENSATION.--The Commission may fix the compensation of the Executive Director and other personnel without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5, United States Code, relating to classification of positions and General Schedule pay rates, except that the rate of pay for the Executive Director and other personnel may not exceed the rate payable for level V of the Executive Schedule under section 5316 of such title.

(c) PROFESSIONAL STAFF.--The Commission and the Executive Director shall hire Commission staff on the basis of professional and nonpartisan qualifications. Commissioners may not individually hire staff of the Commission. Staff shall serve the Commission as a whole and may not be assigned to the particular service of a single Commissioner or a specified group of Commissioners. This subsection does not prohibit staff personnel from assisting individual members of the Commission with particular needs related to their duties.

(d) STAFF AND SERVICES OF OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES.--

(1) DEPARTMENT OF STATE.--The Secretary of State shall assist the Commission by providing on a reimbursable or non-reimbursable basis to the Commission such staff and administrative services as may be necessary and appropriate to perform its functions.

(2) OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES.--Upon the request of the Commission, the head of any Federal department or agency may detail, on a reimbursable or non-reimbursable basis, any of the personnel of that department or agency to the Commission to assist it in carrying out its functions under this title. The detail of any such personnel shall be without interruption or loss of civil service or Foreign Service status or privilege.

(e) SECURITY CLEARANCES.The Executive Director shall be required to obtain a security clearance. The Executive Director may request, on a needsonly basis and in order to perform the duties of the Commission, that other personnel of the Commission be required to obtain a security clearance. The level of clearance shall be the lowest necessary to appropriately perform the duties of the Commission.

(f) COST.--The Commission shall reimburse all appropriate Government agencies for the cost of obtaining clearances for members of the Commission, for the executive director, and for any other personnel.

(g) APPLICATION OF ANTIDISCRIMINATION LAWS.--For purposes of providing remedies and procedures to address alleged violations of rights and protections that pertain to employment discrimination, family and medical leave, fair labor standards, employee polygraph protection, worker adjustment and retraining, veterans’ employment and reemployment, intimidation or reprisal, protections under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, occupational safety and health, labor-management relations, and rights and protections that apply to employees whose pay is disbursed by the Secretary of the Senate or the Chief Administrative Officer of the House of Representatives, all employees of the Commission shall be treated as employees whose pay is disbursed by the Secretary of the Senate or the Chief Administrative Officer of the House of Representatives and the Commission shall be treated as an employing office of the Senate or the House of Representatives.

SEC. 205. REPORT OF THE COMMISSION. [22 USC 6433.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--Not later than May 1 of each year, the Commission shall submit a report to the President, the Secretary of State, and Congress setting forth its recommendations for United States policy options based on its evaluations under section 202.

(b) CLASSIFIED FORM OF REPORT.--The report may be submitted in classified form, together with a public summary of recommendations, if the classification of information would further the purposes of this Act.

(c) INDIVIDUAL OR DISSENTING VIEWS.--Each member of the Commission may include the individual or dissenting views of the member.

SEC. 206. APPLICABILITY OF OTHER LAWS. [22 USC 6434.]

The Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) shall not apply to the Commission.

SEC. 207. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS. [22 USC 6435.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--There are authorized to be appropriated to the Commission $ 3,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 2012 to 2014 to carry out the provisions of this title.

(b) AVAILABILITY OF FUNDS.--Amounts authorized to be appropriated under subparagraph (a) are authorized to remain available until expended but not later than the date of termination of the Commission.

SEC. 208. STANDARDS OF CONDUCT AND DISCLOSURE. [22 USC 6435a.]

(a) COOPERATION WITH NONGOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS, THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE, AND CONGRESS.--The Commission shall seek to effectively and freely cooperate with all entities engaged in the promotion of religious freedom abroad, governmental and nongovernmental, in the performance of the Commission's duties under this title.

(b) CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND ANTI-NEPOTISM.--

(1) MEMBER AFFILIATIONS.--Except as provided in paragraph (3), in order to ensure the independence and integrity of the Commission, the Commission may not compensate any nongovernmental agency, project, or person related to or affiliated with any member of the Commission, whether in that member's direct employ or not. Staff employed by the Commission may not serve in the employ of any nongovernmental agency, project, or person related to or affiliated with any member of the Commission while employed by the Commission.

(2) STAFF COMPENSATION.--Staff of the Commission may not receive compensation from any other source for work performed in carrying out the duties of the Commission while employed by the Commission.

(3) EXCEPTION.--

(A) IN GENERAL.--Subject to subparagraph (B), paragraph (1) shall not apply to payments made for items such as conference fees or the purchase of periodicals or other similar expenses, if such payments would not cause the aggregate value paid to any agency, project, or person for a fiscal year to exceed $250.

(B) LIMITATION.--Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), the Commission shall not give special preference to any agency, project, or person related to or affiliated with any member of the Commission.

(4) DEFINITIONS.--In this subsection, the term “affiliated” means the relationship between a member of the Commission and--

(A) an individual who holds the position of officer, trustee, partner, director, or employee of an agency, project, or person of which that member, or relative of that member of, the Commission is an officer, trustee, partner, director, or employee; or

(B) a nongovernmental agency or project of which that member, or a relative of that member, of the Commission is an officer, trustee, partner, director, or employee.

(c) CONTRACT AUTHORITY.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--Subject to the availability of appropriations, the Commission may contract with and compensate Government agencies or persons for the conduct of activities necessary to the discharge of its functions under this title. Any such person shall be hired without interruption or loss of civil service or Foreign Service status or privilege. The Commission may procure temporary and intermittent services under the authority of section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, except that the Commission may not expend more than $250,000 in any fiscal year to procure such services.

(2) EXPERT STUDY.--In the case of a study requested under section 605 of this Act, the Commission may, subject to the availability of appropriations, contract with experts and shall provide the funds for such a study. The Commission shall not be required to provide the funds for that part of the study conducted by the Comptroller General of the United States.

(d) GIFTS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--In order to preserve its independence, the Commission may not accept, use, or dispose of gifts or donations of services or property. An individual Commissioner or employee of the Commission may not, in his or her capacity as a Commissioner or employee, knowingly accept, use or dispose of gifts or donations of services or property, unless he or she in good faith believes such gifts or donations to have a value of less than $50 and a cumulative value during a calendar year of less than $100.

(2) EXCEPTIONS.--This subsection shall not apply to the following:

(A) Gifts provided on the basis of a personal friendship with a Commissioner or employee, unless the Commissioner or employee has reason to believe that the gift was provided because of the Commissioner's position and not because of the personal friendship.

(B) Gifts provided on the basis of a family relationship.

(C) The acceptance of training, invitations to attend or participate in conferences or such other events as are related to the conduct of the duties of the Commission, or food or refreshment associated with such activities.

(D) Items of nominal value or gifts of estimated value of $10 or less.

(E) De minimis gifts provided by a foreign leader or state, not exceeding a value of $260. Gifts believed by Commissioners to be in excess of $260, but which would create offense or embarrassment to the United States Government if refused, shall be accepted and turned over to the United States Government in accordance with the Foreign Gifts and Decorations Act of 1966 and the rules and regulations governing such gifts provided to Members of Congress.

(F) Informational materials such as documents, books, videotapes, periodicals, or other forms of communications.

(G) Goods or services provided by any agency or component of the Government of the United States, including any commission established under the authority of such Government.

(e) ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORT.--In addition to providing the reports required under section 202, the Commission shall provide, each year no later than January 1, to the Committees on Foreign Affairs and Appropriations of the House of Representatives, and to the Committees on Foreign Relations and Appropriations of the Senate, a financial report detailing and identifying its expenditures for the preceding fiscal year.

SEC. 209. TERMINATION. [22 USC 6436.]

The Commission shall terminate on September 30, 2014.

TITLE III-NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL

SEC. 301. SPECIAL ADVISER ON INTERNATIONAL RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.

Section 101 of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 402) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

“(i) It is the sense of the Congress that there should be within the staff of the National Security Council a Special Adviser to the President on International Religious Freedom, whose position should be comparable to that of a director within the Executive Office of the President. The Special Adviser should serve as a resource for executive branch officials, compiling and maintaining information on the facts and circumstances of violations of religious freedom (as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998), and making policy recommendations. The Special Adviser should serve as liaison with the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, Congress and, as advisable, religious nongovernmental organizations.”.

TITLE IV-PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS

Subtitle I-Targeted Responses to

Violations of Religious Freedom Abroad

SEC. 401. PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS IN RESPONSE TO VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. [22 USC 6441.]

(a) RESPONSE TO VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--

(A) UNITED STATES.--It shall be the policy of the United States--

(i) to oppose violations of religious freedom that are or have been engaged in or tolerated by the governments of foreign countries; and

(ii) to promote the right to freedom of religion in those countries through the actions described in subsection (b).

(B) REQUIREMENT OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTION.--For each foreign country the government of which engages in or tolerates violations of religious freedom, the President shall oppose such violations and promote the right to freedom of religion in that country through the actions described in subsection (b).

(2) BASIS OF ACTIONS.--Each action taken under paragraph (1)(B) shall be based upon information regarding violations of religious freedom, as described in the latest Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, the Annual Report and Executive Summary, and on any other evidence available, and shall take into account any findings or recommendations by the Commission with respect to the foreign country.

(b) PRESDIENTIAL ACTIONS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), the President, in consultation with the Secretary of State, the Ambassador at Large, the Special Adviser, and the Commission, shall, as expeditiously as practicable in response to the violations described in subsection (a) by the government of a foreign country--

(A) take one or more of the actions described in paragraphs (1) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) with respect to such country; or

(B) negotiate and enter into a binding agreement with the government of such country, as described in section 405(c).

(2) DEADLINE FOR ACTIONS.--Not later than September 1 of each year, the President shall take action under any of paragraphs (1) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) with respect to each foreign country the government of which has engaged in or tolerated violations of religious freedom at any time since September 1 of the preceding year, except that in the case of action under any of paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto)--

(A) the action may only be taken after the requirements of sections 403 and 404 have been satisfied; and

(B) the September 1 limitation shall not apply.

(3) AUTHORITY FOR DELAY OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--The President may delay action under paragraph (2) described in any of paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) if he determines and certifies to Congress that a single, additional period of time, not to exceed 90 days, is necessary pursuant to the same provisions applying to countries of particular concern for religious freedom under section 402(c)(3).

(c) IMPLEMENTATION.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--In carrying out subsection (b), the President shall--

(A) take the action or actions that most appropriately respond to the nature and severity of the violations of religious freedom;

(B) seek to the fullest extent possible to target action as narrowly as practicable with respect to the agency or instrumentality of the foreign government, or specific officials thereof, that are responsible for such violations; and

(C) when appropriate, make every reasonable effort to conclude a binding agreement concerning the cessation of such violations in countries with which the United States has diplomatic relations.

(2) GUIDELINES FOR PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--In addition to the guidelines under paragraph (1), the President, in determining whether to take a Presidential action under paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto), shall seek to minimize any adverse impact on--

(A) the population of the country whose government is targeted by the Presidential action or actions; and

(B) the humanitarian activities of United States and foreign nongovernmental organizations in such country.

SEC. 402. PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS IN RESPONSE TO PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. [22 USC 6442.]

(a) RESPONSE TO PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) UNITED STATES POLICY.--It shall be the policy of the United States--

(A) to oppose particularly severe violations of religious freedom that are or have been engaged in or tolerated by the governments of foreign countries; and

(B) to promote the right to freedom of religion in those countries through the actions described in subsection (c).

(2) REQUIREMENT OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTION.--Whenever the President determines that the government of a foreign country has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom, the President shall oppose such violations and promote the right to religious freedom through one or more of the actions described in subsection (c).

(b) DESIGNATIONS OF COUNTRIES OF PARTICULAR CONCERN FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) ANNUAL REVIEW.--

(A) In general.Not later than September 1 of each year, the President shall review the status of religious freedom in each foreign country to determine whether the government of that country has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom in that country during the preceding 12 months or since the date of the last review of that country under this subparagraph, whichever period is longer. The President shall designate each country the government of which has engaged in or tolerated violations described in this subparagraph as a country of particular concern for religious freedom.

(B) BASIS OF REVIEW.--Each review conducted under subparagraph (A) shall be based upon information contained in the latest Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, the Annual Report, and on any other evidence available and shall take into account any findings or recommendations by the Commission with respect to the foreign country.

(C) IMPLEMENTATION.--Any review under subparagraph (A) of a foreign country may take place singly or jointly with the review of one or more countries and may take place at any time prior to September 1 of the respective year.

(2) DETERMINATIONS OF RESPONSIBLE PARTIES.--For the government of each country designated as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under paragraph (1)(A), the President shall seek to determine the agency or instrumentality thereof and the specific officials thereof that are responsible for the particularly severe violations of religious freedom engaged in or tolerated by that government in order to appropriately target Presidential actions under this section in response.

(3) CONGRESSIONAL NOTIFICATION.--Whenever the President designates a country as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under paragraph (1)(A), the President shall, as soon as practicable after the designation is made, transmit to the appropriate congressional committees--

(A) the designation of the country, signed by the President; and

(B) the identification, if any, of responsible parties determined under paragraph (2).

(c) PRESIDENTIAL ACTION WITH RESPECT TO COUNTRIES OF PARTICULAR CONCERN FOR RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--Subject to paragraphs (2), (3), (4), and (5) with respect to each country of particular concern for religious freedom designated under subsection (b)(1)(A), the President shall, after the requirements of sections 403 and 404 have been satisfied, but not later than 90 days (or 180 days in case of a delay under paragraph (3)) after the date of designation of the country under that subsection, carry out one or more of the following actions under subparagraph (A) or subparagraph (B):

(A) PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--One or more of the Presidential actions described in paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a), as determined by the President.

(B) COMMENSURATE ACTIONS.--Commensurate action in substitution to any action described in subparagraph (A).

(2) SUBSTITUTION OF BINDING AGREEMENTS.--

(A) IN GENERAL.--In lieu of carrying out action under paragraph (1), the President may conclude a binding agreement with the respective foreign government as described in section 405(c). The existence of a binding agreement under this paragraph with a foreign government may be considered by the President prior to making any determination or taking any action under this title.

(B) STATUATORY CONSTRUCTION.--Nothing in this paragraph may be construed to authorize the entry of the United States into an agreement covering matters outside the scope of violations of religious freedom.

(3) AUTHORITY FOR DELAY OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--If, on or before the date that the President is required (but for this paragraph) to take action under paragraph (1), the President determines and certifies to Congress that a single, additional period of time not to exceed 90 days is necessary--

(A) for a continuation of negotiations that have been commenced with the government of that country to bring about a cessation of the violations by the foreign country;

(B) for a continuation of multilateral negotiations into which the United States has entered to bring about a cessation of the violations by the foreign country;

(C)(i) for a review of corrective action taken by the foreign country after designation of such country as a country of particular concern; or

(ii) in anticipation that corrective action will be taken by the foreign country during the 90day period,

then the President shall not be required to take action until the expiration of that period of time.

(4) EXCEPTION FOR ONGOING PRESIDENTIAL ACTION UNDER THIS ACT.--The President shall not be required to take action pursuant to this subsection in the case of a country of particular concern for religious freedom, if with respect to such country

(A) the President has taken action pursuant to this Act in a preceding year;

(B) such action is in effect at the time the country is designated as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under this section; and

(C) the President reports to Congress the information described in section 404(a)(1), (2), (3), and (4) regarding the actions in effect with respect to the country.

(5) EXCEPTION FOR ONGOING, MULTIPLE, BROAD-BASED SANCTIONS IN RESPONSE TO HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS.--At the time the President determines a country to be a country of particular concern, if that country is already subject to multiple, broadbased sanctions imposed in significant part in response to human rights abuses, and such sanctions are ongoing, the President may determine that one or more of these sanctions also satisfies the requirements of this subsection. In a report to Congress pursuant to section 404(a)(1), (2), (3), and (4), and, as applicable, to section 408, the President must designate the specific sanction or sanctions which he determines satisfy the requirements of this subsection. The sanctions so designated shall remain in effect subject to section 409 of this Act.

(d) STATUATORY CONSTRUCTION.--A determination under this Act, or any amendment made by this Act, that a foreign country has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom shall not be construed to require the termination of assistance or other activities with respect to that country under any other provision of law, including section 116 or 502B of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151n, 2304).

SEC. 403. CONSULTATIONS. [22 USC 6443.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--As soon as practicable after the President decides to take action under section 401 in response to violations of religious freedom and the President decides to take action under paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) with respect to that country, or not later than 90 days after the President designates a country as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under section 402, as the case may be, the President shall carry out the consultations required in this section.

(b) DUTY TO CONSULT WITH FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS PRIOR TO TAKING PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--The President shall--

(A) request consultation with the government of such country regarding the violations giving rise to designation of that country as a country of particular concern for religious freedom or to Presidential action under section 401; and

(B) if agreed to, enter into such consultations, privately or publicly.

(2) USE OF MULTILATERAL FORA.--If the President determines it to be appropriate, such consultations may be sought and may occur in a multilateral forum, but, in any event, the President shall consult with appropriate foreign governments for the purposes of achieving a coordinated international policy on actions that may be taken with respect to a country described in subsection (a), prior to implementing any such action.

(3) ELECTION OF NONDISCLOSURE OF NEGOTIONS TO PUBLIC.--If negotiations are undertaken or an agreement is concluded with a foreign government regarding steps to cease the pattern of violations by that government, and if public disclosure of such negotiations or agreement would jeopardize the negotiations or the implementation of such agreement, as the case may be, the President may refrain from disclosing such negotiations and such agreement to the public, except that the President shall inform the appropriate congressional committees of the nature and extent of such negotiations and any agreement reached.

(c) DUTY TO CONSULT WITH HUMANITARIAN ORGANIZATIONS.--The President should consult with appropriate humanitarian and religious organizations concerning the potential impact of United States policies to promote freedom of religion in countries described in subsection (a).

(d) DUTY TO CONSULT WITH UNITED STATES INTERESTED PARTIES.--The President shall, as appropriate, consult with United States interested parties as to the potential impact of intended Presidential action or actions in countries described in subsection (a) on economic or other interests of the United States.

SEC. 404. REPORT TO CONGRESS. [22 USC 6444.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--Subject to subsection (b), not later than 90 days after the President decides to take action under section 401 in response to violations of religious freedom and the President decides to take action under paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) with respect to that country, or not later than 90 days after the President designates a country as a country of particular concern for religious freedom under section 402, as the case may be, the President shall submit a report to Congress containing the following:

(1) IDENTIFICATION OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--An identification of the Presidential action or actions described in paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) to be taken with respect to the foreign country.

(2) DESCRIPTION OF VIOLATIONS.--A description of the violations giving rise to the Presidential action or actions to be taken.

(3) PURPOSE OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--A description of the purpose of the Presidential action or actions.

(4) EVALUATION.--

(A) DESCRIPTION.--An evaluation, in consultation with the Secretary of State, the Ambassador at Large, the Commission, the Special Adviser, the parties described in section 403(c) and (d), and whoever else the President deems appropriate, of

(i) the impact upon the foreign government;

(ii) the impact upon the population of the country; and

(iii) the impact upon the United States economy and other interested parties.

(B) AUTHORITY TO WITHHOLD DISCLOSURE.--The President may withhold part or all of such evaluation from the public but shall provide the entire evaluation to Congress.

(5) STATEMENT OF POLICY OPTIONS.--A statement that noneconomic policy options designed to bring about cessation of the particularly severe violations of religious freedom have reasonably been exhausted, including the consultations required in section 403.

(6) DESCRIPTION OF MULTILATERAL NEGOTIATIONS.--A description of multilateral negotiations sought or carried out, if appropriate and applicable.

(b) DELAY IN TRANSMITTAL OF REPORT.--If, on or before the date that the President is required (but for this subsection) to submit a report under subsection (a) to Congress, the President determines and certifies to Congress that a single, additional period of time not to exceed 90 days is necessary pursuant to section 401(b)(3) or 402(c)(3), then the President shall not be required to submit the report to Congress until the expiration of that period of time.

SEC. 405. DESCRIPTION OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS. [22 USC 6445.]

(a) DESCRIPTION OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--Except as provided in subsection (d), the Presidential actions referred to in this subsection are the following:

(1) A private demarche.

(2) An official public demarche.

(3) A public condemnation.

(4) A public condemnation within one or more multilateral fora.

(5) The delay or cancellation of one or more scientific exchanges.

(6) The delay or cancellation of one or more cultural exchanges.

(7) The denial of one or more working, official, or state visits.

(8) The delay or cancellation of one or more working, official, or state visits.

(9) The withdrawal, limitation, or suspension of United States development assistance in accordance with section 116 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.

(10) Directing the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, or the Trade and Development Agency not to approve the issuance of any (or a specified number of ) guarantees, insurance, extensions of credit, or participations in the extension of credit with respect to the specific government, agency, instrumentality, or official found or determined by the President to be responsible for violations under section 401 or 402.

(11) The withdrawal, limitation, or suspension of United States security assistance in accordance with section 502B of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.

(12) Consistent with section 701 of the International Financial Institutions Act of 1977, directing the United States executive directors of international financial institutions to oppose and vote against loans primarily benefiting the specific foreign government, agency, instrumentality, or official found or determined by the President to be responsible for violations under section 401 or 402.

(13) Ordering the heads of the appropriate United States agencies not to issue any (or a specified number of ) specific licenses, and not to grant any other specific authority (or a specified number of authorities), to export any goods or technology to the specific foreign government, agency, instrumentality, or official found or determined by the President to be responsible for violations under section 401 or 402, under

(A) the Export Administration Act of 1979;

(B) the Arms Export Control Act;

(C) the Atomic Energy Act of 1954; or

(D) any other statute that requires the prior review and approval of the United States Government as a condition for the export or re-export of goods or services.

(14) Prohibiting any United States financial institution from making loans or providing credits totaling more than $10,000,000 in any 12month period to the specific foreign government, agency, instrumentality, or official found or determined by the President to be responsible for violations under section 401 or 402.

(15) Prohibiting the United States Government from procuring, or entering into any contract for the procurement of, any goods or services from the foreign government, entities, or officials found or determined by the President to be responsible for violations under section 401 or 402.

(b) COMMENSURATE ACTION.--Except as provided in subsection (d), the President may substitute any other action authorized by law for any action described in paragraphs (1) through (15) of subsection (a) if such action is commensurate in effect to the action substituted and if the action would further the policy of the United States set forth in section 2(b) of this Act. The President shall seek to take all appropriate and feasible actions authorized by law to obtain the cessation of the violations. If commensurate action is taken, the President shall report such action, together with an explanation for taking such action, to the appropriate congressional committees.

(c) BINDING AGREEMENTS.--The President may negotiate and enter into a binding agreement with a foreign government that obligates such government to cease, or take substantial steps to address and phase out, the act, policy, or practice constituting the violation of religious freedom. The entry into force of a binding agreement for the cessation of the violations shall be a primary objective for the President in responding to a foreign government that has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

(d) EXCEPTIONS.--Any action taken pursuant to subsection (a) or (b) may not prohibit or restrict the provision of medicine, medical equipment or supplies, food, or other humanitarian assistance.

SEC. 406. EFFECTS ON EXISTING CONTRACTS. [22 USC 6446.]

The President shall not be required to apply or maintain any Presidential action under this subtitle --

(1) in the case of procurement of defense articles or defense services

(A) under existing contracts or subcontracts, including the exercise of options for production quantities, to satisfy requirements essential to the national security of the United States;

(B) if the President determines in writing and so reports to Congress that the person or other entity to which the Presidential action would otherwise be applied is a sole source supplier of the defense articles or services, that the defense articles or services are essential, and that alternative sources are not readily or reasonably available; or

(C) if the President determines in writing and so reports to Congress that such articles or services are essential to the national security under defense coproduction agreements; or

(2) to products or services provided under contracts entered into before the date on which the President publishes his intention to take the Presidential action.

SEC. 407. PRESIDENTIAL WAIVER. [22 USC 6447.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--Subject to subsection (b), the President may waive the application of any of the actions described in paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) with respect to a country, if the President determines and so reports to the appropriate congressional committees that--

(1) the respective foreign government has ceased the violations giving rise to the Presidential action;

(2) the exercise of such waiver authority would further the purposes of this Act; or

(3) the important national interest of the United States requires the exercise of such waiver authority.

(b) CONGRESSIONAL NOTIFICATION.--Not later than the date of the exercise of a waiver under subsection (a), the President shall notify the appropriate congressional committees of the waiver or the intention to exercise the waiver, together with a detailed justification thereof.

SEC. 408. PUBLICATION IN FEDERAL REGISTER. [22 USC 6448.]

(a) IN GENERAL.--Subject to subsection (b), the President shall cause to be published in the Federal Register the following:

(1) DETERMINATIONS OF COUNTRIES, OFFICIALS, AND ENTITIES OF PARTICULAR CONCERN.--Any designation of a country of particular concern for religious freedom under section 402(b)(1), together with, when applicable and to the extent practicable, the identities of the officials or entities determined to be responsible for the violations under section 402(b)(2).

(2) PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS.--A description of any Presidential action under paragraphs (9) through (15) of section 405(a) (or commensurate action in substitution thereto) and the effective date of the Presidential action.

(3) DELAYS IN TRANSMITTAL OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTION REPORTS.--Any delay in transmittal of a Presidential action report, as described in section 404(b).

(4) WAIVERS.--Any waiver under section 407.

(b) LIMITED DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION.--The President may limit publication of information under this section in the same manner and to the same extent as the President may limit the publication of findings and determinations described in section 654(c) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2414(c)), if the President determines that the publication of information under this section--

(1) would be harmful to the national security of the United States; or

(2) would not further the purposes of this Act.

SEC. 409. TERMINATION OF PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS. [22 USC 6449.]

Any Presidential action taken under this Act with respect to a foreign country shall terminate on the earlier of the following dates:

(1) TERMINATION DATE.--Within 2 years of the effective date of the Presidential action unless expressly reauthorized by law.

(2) FOREIGN GOVERNMENT ACTIONS.--Upon the determination by the President, in consultation with the Commission, and certification to Congress that the foreign government has ceased or taken substantial and verifiable steps to cease the particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

SEC. 410. PRECLUSION OF JUDICIAL REVIEW. [22 USC 6450.]

No court shall have jurisdiction to review any Presidential determination or agency action under this Act or any amendment made by this Act.

Subtitle II-Strengthening Existing Law

SEC. 421. UNITED STATES ASSISTANCE.

(a) IMPLEMENTATION OF PROHIBITION ON ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE.--Section 116(c) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151n(c)) is amended--

(1) in the text above paragraph (1), by inserting “and in consultation with the Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom” after “Labor”;

(2) by striking “and” at the end of paragraph (1);

(3) by striking the period at the end of paragraph (2) and inserting “; and”; and

(4) by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

“(3) whether the government--

“(A) has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom, as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998; or

“(B) has failed to undertake serious and sustained efforts to combat particularly severe violations of religious freedom (as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998), when such efforts could have been reasonably undertaken.''.

(b) IMPLEMENTATION OF PROHIBITION ON MILITARY ASSISTANCE.--Section 502B(a) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2304(a)) is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

“(4) In determining whether the government of a country engages in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, the President shall give particular consideration to whether the government--

“(A) has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom, as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998; or

“(B) has failed to undertake serious and sustained efforts to combat particularly severe violations of religious freedom when such efforts could have been reasonably undertaken.”.

SEC. 422. MULTILATERAL ASSISTANCE.

Section 701 of the International Financial Institutions Act (22 U.S.C. 262d) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

“(g) In determining whether the government of a country engages in a pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, as described in subsection (a), the President shall give particular consideration to whether a foreign government--

“(1) has engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom, as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998; or

“(2) has failed to undertake serious and sustained efforts to combat particularly severe violations of religious freedom when such efforts could have been reasonably undertaken.”.

SEC. 423. EXPORTS OF CERTAIN ITEMS USED IN PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. [22 USC 6461.]

(a) MANDATORY LICENSING.--Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary of Commerce, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, shall include on the list of crime control and detection instruments or equipment controlled for export and re-export under section 6(n) of the Export Administration Act of 1979 (22 U.S.C. App. 2405(n)), or under any other provision of law, items being exported or re-exported to countries of particular concern for religious freedom that the Secretary of Commerce, with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, and in consultation with appropriate officials including the Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor and the Ambassador at Large, determines are being used or are intended for use directly and in significant measure to carry out particularly severe violations of religious freedom.

(b) LICENSING BAN.--The prohibition on the issuance of a license for export of crime control and detection instruments or equipment under section 502B(a)(2) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2304(a)(2)) shall apply to the export and re-export of any item included pursuant to subsection (a) on the list of crime control instruments.

TITLE V-PROMOTION OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM

SEC. 501. ASSISTANCE FOR PROMOTING RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.

(a) Findings [21 USC 2151n note.].Congress makes the following findings:

(1) In many nations where severe violations of religious freedom occur, there is not sufficient statutory legal protection for religious minorities or there is not sufficient cultural and social understanding of international norms of religious freedom.

(2) Accordingly, in the provision of foreign assistance, the United States should make a priority of promoting and developing legal protections and cultural respect for religious freedom.

(b) ALLOCATION OF FUNDS FOR PROMOTION OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--Section 116(e) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2151n(e)) is amended by inserting “, including the right to free religious belief and practice” after “adherence to civil and political rights”.

SEC. 502. INTERNATIONAL BROADCASTING.

Section 303(a) of the United States International Broadcasting Act of 1994 (22 U.S.C. 6202(a)) is amended--

(1) by striking “and” at the end of paragraph (6);

(2) by striking the period at the end of paragraph (7) and inserting “; and”; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

“(8) promote respect for human rights, including freedom of religion.”.

SEC. 503. INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGES.

Section 102(b) of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2452(b)) is amended--

(1) by striking “and” after paragraph (10);

(2) by striking the period at the end of paragraph (11) and inserting “; and”; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

“(12) promoting respect for and guarantees of religious freedom abroad by interchanges and visits between the United States and other nations of religious leaders, scholars, and religious and legal experts in the field of religious freedom.”.

SEC. 504. FOREIGN SERVICE AWARDS.

(a) PERFORMANCE PAY.--Section 405(d) of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 3965(d)) is amended by inserting after the first sentence the following: ``Such service in the promotion of internationally recognized human rights, including the right to freedom of religion, shall serve as a basis for granting awards under this section.''.

(b) FOREIGN SERVICE AWARDS.--Section 614 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4013) is amended by adding at the end the following new sentence: “Distinguished, meritorious service in the promotion of internationally recognized human rights, including the right to freedom of religion, shall serve as a basis for granting awards under this section.''.

TITLE VI-REFUGEE, ASYLUM, AND CONSULAR MATTERS

SEC. 601. USE OF ANNUAL REPORT. [22 USC 6471.]

The Annual Report, together with other relevant documentation, shall serve as a resource for immigration judges and consular, refugee, and asylum officers in cases involving claims of persecution on the grounds of religion. Absence of reference by the Annual Report to conditions described by the alien shall not constitute the sole grounds for a denial of the alien's claim.

SEC. 602. REFORM OF REFUGEE POLICY. [22 USC 6472.]

(a) TRAINING.--Section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1157) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:

“(f )(1) The Attorney General, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall provide all United States officials adjudicating refugee cases under this section with the same training as that provided to officers adjudicating asylum cases under section 208.

“(2) Such training shall include countryspecific conditions, instruction on the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion, instruction on methods of religious persecution practiced in foreign countries, and applicable distinctions within a country between the nature of and treatment of various religious practices and believers.”.

(b) TRAINING FOR FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICERS.--Section 708 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as added by section 104 of this Act, is further amended--

(1) by inserting “(a)” before “The Secretary of State”; and

(2) by adding at the end the following:

“(b) The Secretary of State shall provide sessions on refugee law and adjudications and on religious persecution to each individual seeking a commission as a United States consular officer. The Secretary shall also ensure that any member of the Service who is assigned to a position that may be called upon to assess requests for consideration for refugee admissions, including any consular officer, has completed training on refugee law and refugee adjudications in addition to the training required in this section.”.

(c) GUIDELINES FOR REFUGEE-PROCESSING POSTS.--

(1) GUIDELINES FOR ADDRESSING HOSTILE BIASES.--The Attorney General and the Secretary of State shall develop and implement guidelines that address potential biases in personnel of the Immigration and Naturalization Service and of the Department of Statethat are hired abroad and involved with duties which could constitute an effective barrier to a refugee claim if such personnel carries a bias against the claimant on the grounds of religion, race, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. The subject matter of this training should be culturally sensitive and tailored to provide a nonbiased, non-adversarial atmosphere for the purpose of refugee adjudications.

(2) GUIDELINES FOR REFUGEE-PROCESSING POSTS IN ESTABLISHING AGREEMENTS WITH UNTED STATES GOVERNMENT-DESIGNATED REFUGEE-PROCESSING ENTITIES.--The Attorney General and the Secretary of State shall develop and implement guidelines to ensure uniform procedures for establishing agreements with United States Governmentdesignated refugee processing entities and personnel, and uniform procedures for such entities and personnel responsible for preparing refugee case files for use by the Immigration and Naturalization Service during refugee adjudications. These procedures should ensure, to the extent practicable, that case files prepared by such entities accurately reflect information provided by the refugee applicants and that genuine refugee applicants are not disadvantaged or denied refugee status due to faulty case file preparation.

(3) Not later than 120 days after the date of the enactment of the Admiral James W. Nance and Meg Donovan Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 2000 and 2001, the Secretary of State (after consultation with the Attorney General) shall issue guidelines to ensure that persons with potential biases against any refugee applicant, including persons employed by, or otherwise subject to influence by, governments known to be involved in persecution on account of religion, race, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion, shall not in any way be used in processing determinations of refugee status, including interpretation of conversations or examination of documents presented by such applicants.

(d) ANNUAL CONSULTATION.--The President shall include in each annual report on proposed refugee admissions under section 207(d) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1157(d)) information about religious persecution of refugee populations eligible for consideration for admission to the United States. The Secretary of State shall include information on religious persecution of refugee populations in the formal testimony presented to the Committees on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and the Senate during the consultation process under section 207(e) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1157(e)).

SEC. 603. REFORM OF ASYLUM POLICY. [22 USC 6473.]

(a) GUIDELINES.--The Attorney General and the Secretary of State shall develop guidelines to ensure that persons with potential biases against individuals on the grounds of religion, race, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion, including interpreters and personnel of airlines owned by governments known to be involved in practices which would meet the definition of persecution under international refugee law, shall not in any manner be used to interpret conversations between aliens and inspection or asylum officers.

(b) TRAINING FOR ASYLUM AND IMMIGRATION OFFICERS.--The Attorney General, in consultation with the Secretary of State, the Ambassador at Large, and other relevant officials such as the Director of the National Foreign Affairs Training Center, shall provide training to all officers adjudicating asylum cases, and to immigration officers performing duties under section 235(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1225(b)), on the nature of religious persecution abroad, including countryspecific conditions, instruction on the internationally recognized right to freedom of religion, instruction on methods of religious persecution practiced in foreign countries, and applicable distinctions within a country in the treatment of various religious practices and believers.

(c) TRAINING FOR IMMIGRATION JUDGES.--The Executive Office of Immigration Review of the Department of Justice shall incorporate into its initial and ongoing training of immigration judges training on the extent and nature of religious persecution internationally, including countryspecific conditions, and including use of the Annual Report. Such training shall include governmental and nongovernmental methods of persecution employed, and differences in the treatment of religious groups by such persecuting entities.

SEC. 604. INADMISSIBILITY OF FOREIGN GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS WHO HAVE ENGAGED IN PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.

(a) INELIGIBILITY FOR VISAS OR ADMISSION.--Section 212(a)(2) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(2)) is amended by adding at the end the following new subparagraph:

“(G) FOREIGN GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS WHO HAVE ENGAGED IN PARTICULARLY SEVERE VIOLATIONS OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.--Any alien who, while serving as a foreign government official, was responsible for or directly carried out, at any time, particularly severe violations of religious freedom, as defined in section 3 of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, is inadmissible.”.

(b) EFFECTIVE DATE.--The amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply to aliens seeking to enter the United States on or after the date of the enactment of this Act. [8 USC 1182 note.]

SEC. 605. STUDIES ON THE EFFECT OF EXPEDITED REMOVAL PROVISIONS ON ASYLUM CLAIMS. [22 USC 6474.]

(a) STUDIES.--

(1) COMMISSION REQUEST FOR PARTICIPATION BY EXPERTS ON REFUGEE AND ASYLUM ISSUES --If the Commission so requests, the Attorney General shall invite experts designated by the Commission, who are recognized for their expertise and knowledge of refugee and asylum issues, to conduct a study, in cooperation with the Comptroller General of the United States, to determine whether immigration officers described in paragraph (2) are engaging in any of the conduct described in such paragraph.

(2) DUTIES OF COMPTROLLER GENERAL.--The Comptroller General of the United States shall conduct a study alone or, upon request by the Commission, in cooperation with experts designated by the Commission, to determine whether immigration officers performing duties under section 235(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1225(b)) with respect to aliens who may be eligible to be granted asylum are engaging in any of the following conduct:

(A) Improperly encouraging such aliens to withdraw their applications for admission.

(B) Incorrectly failing to refer such aliens for an interview by an asylum officer for a determination of whether they have a credible fear of persecution (within the meaning of section 235(b)(1)(B)(v) of such Act).

(C) Incorrectly removing such aliens to a country where they may be persecuted.

(D) Detaining such aliens improperly or in inappropriate conditions.

(b) Reports.

(1) Participation by experts.In the case of a Commission request under subsection (a), the experts designated by the Commission under that subsection may submit a report to the committees described in paragraph (2). Such report may be submitted with the Comptroller General's report under subsection (a)(2) or independently.

(2) Duties of comptroller general.Not later than September 1, 2000, the Comptroller General of the United States shall submit to the Committees on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and the Senate, the Committee on International Relations of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate a report containing the results of the study conducted under subsection (a)(2). If the Commission requests designated experts to participate with the Comptroller General in the preparation and submission of the report, the Comptroller General shall grant the request.

(c) ACCESS TO PROCEEDINGS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--Except as provided in paragraph (2), to facilitate the studies and reports, the Attorney General shall permit the Comptroller General of the United States and, in the case of a Commission request under subsection (a), the experts designated under subsection (a) to have unrestricted access to all stages of all proceedings conducted under section 235(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

(2) EXCEPTIONS.--Paragraph (1) shall not apply in cases in which the alien objects to such access, or the Attorney General determines that the security of a particular proceeding would be threatened by such access, so long as any restrictions on the access of experts designated by the Commission under subsection (a) do not contravene international law.

TITLE VII-MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

SEC. 701. BUSINESS CODES OF CONDUCT. [22 USC 6481.]

(a) CONGRESSIONAL FINDING.-Congress recognizes the increasing importance of transnational corporations as global actors, and their potential for providing positive leadership in their host countries in the area of human rights.

(b) SENSE OF THE CONGRESS.--It is the sense of the Congress that transnational corporations operating overseas, particularly those corporations operating in countries the governments of which have engaged in or tolerated violations of religious freedom, as identified in the Annual Report, should adopt codes of conduct--

(1) upholding the right to freedom of religion of their employees; and

(2) ensuring that a worker's religious views and peaceful practices of belief in no way affect, or be allowed to affect, the status or terms of his or her employment.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

Public Law 112-75: HR 2867. Passed House September 15, 2011. Passed Senate December 16, 2011. Approved December 23, 2011.

Public Law 107-228: H.R. 1646 (S. 1401): HOUSE REPORTS: Nos. 107-57 (Comm. on International Relations) and 107-671 (Comm. of Conference). SENATE REPORTS: No. 107-60 accompanying S. 1401 (Comm. on Foreign Relations). CONGRESSIONAL RECORD: Vol. 147 (2001): May 16, considered and passed House. Vol. 148 (2002): May 1, considered and passed Senate, amended. Sept. 25, House agreed to conference report. Sept. 26, Senate agreed to conference report. Approved September 30, 2002. WEEKLY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS, Vol. 38 (2002): Sept. 30, Presidential statement.

Public Law 105292: H.R. 2431. HOUSE REPORTS: No. 105480, Pt. 1 (Comm. on International Relations), Pt. 2 (Comm. on Ways and Means), and Pt. 3 (Comm. on the Judiciary).CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 144 (1998): May 14, considered and passed House; Oct. 8, 9, considered and passed Senate, amended; Oct. 10, House concurred in Senate amendments. Approved October 27, 1998. WEEKLY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS, Vol. 34 (1998): Oct. 27, Presidential statement.

Public Law 106-55: S. 1546. CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 145 (1999): Aug. 5, considered and passed Senate and House. Approved August 17, 1999.