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H.R. 1795 - Middle East Peace Commitments Act of 2001

May 10th, 2001

HR 1795 IH

107th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1795

To require the imposition of sanctions with respect to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) or the Palestinian Authority if the President determines that these entities have not complied with certain commitments made by the entities, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

May 10, 2001

Mr. ACKERMAN (for himself, Mr. GILMAN, and Mr. LANTOS) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on International Relations


A BILL

To require the imposition of sanctions with respect to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) or the Palestinian Authority if the President determines that these entities have not complied with certain commitments made by the entities, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the `Middle East Peace Commitments Act of 2001'.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:

      (1) In 1993, the Palestine Liberation Organization (hereinafter in this title referred to as the `PLO') made the following commitments in an exchange of letters with the Prime Minister of Israel:

        (A) Recognition of the right of the State of Israel to exist in peace and security.

        (B) Acceptance of United Nations Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338.

        (C) Resolution of all outstanding issues in the conflict between the two sides through negotiations and exclusively peaceful means.

        (D) Renunciation of the use of terrorism and all other acts of violence and responsibility over all PLO elements and personnel in order to assure their compliance, prevent violations, and discipline violators.

      (2) The Palestinian Authority, the governing body of autonomous Palestinian territories, was created as a result of agreements between the PLO and the State of Israel that are a direct outgrowth of the commitments made in 1993.

      (3) The PLO made the following commitments in the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements of 1993, the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip of 1995, and the Wye River Memorandum of 1998:

        (A) To resolve disputes arising out of any agreements pertaining to the interim period by negotiations, arbitration, or other mutually agreed upon mechanisms of conciliation.

        (B) To take all measures necessary in order to prevent acts of terrorism, crime and hostilities directed against the State of Israel.

        (C) To abstain from incitement, including hostile propaganda, against the State of Israel, and to take legal measures to prevent such incitement by organizations, groups, or individuals under their control.

        (D) To arrest and prosecute individuals suspected of perpetrating acts of violence and terror and to punish all persons involved in acts of violence and terror.

        (E) To provide for the protection of Jewish holy sites in areas under the administration of the Palestinian Authority, as well as persons visiting them, and to ensure the peaceful use of such sites, to prevent any instances of disorder and to respond to any incident.

        (F) To prevent the establishment or operation in the West Bank or Gaza Strip of any armed force other than the Palestinian Police and Israeli military forces.

        (G) To establish, and vigorously and continually implement, a systematic program for the collection and appropriate handling of all illegal firearms, ammunition or weapons.

        (H) To maintain continuous intensive and comprehensive bilateral security cooperation with Israel.

      (4) The President of the United States witnessed and signed the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements of 1993, the Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip of 1995, and the Wye River Memorandum of 1998, placing at issue the credibility and reputation of the United States with regard to the implementation of the agreements.

      (5) The United States has a longstanding, and enduring, vital national security interest in the peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and to that end has provided the parties with its good offices and considerable financial assistance.

      (6) The State of Israel has made incontrovertible and extensive efforts to resolve its conflict with the PLO by negotiating in good faith and offering concessions of a magnitude to demonstrate conclusively its clear commitment to reaching a just and enduring settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

      (7) The PLO's commitment to its freely accepted obligations, specified in paragraphs (1) and (3), has come into question as a result of the violence and mayhem occurring since September 28, 2000, creating significant doubt as to the PLO's commitment to the fundamental principle of resolving its conflict with the State of Israel exclusively through direct bilateral negotiations.

SEC. 3. REPORTS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- The President shall, at the times specified in subsection (b), transmit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on compliance by the PLO or the Palestinian Authority, as appropriate, with each of the commitments specified in section 2(1) and 2(3). The report shall include, with respect to each such commitment, the determination of the President as to whether or not the PLO or the Palestinian Authority, as appropriate, has complied with that commitment during

the period since the submission of the preceding report or, in the case of the initial report, during the preceding six-month period. In the event that the President imposed one or more sanctions under section 4 during the period covered by the report, the report shall include a description of the each such sanction imposed.

    (b) TRANSMISSION- The initial report required under subsection (a) shall be transmitted not later than 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act. Each subsequent report shall be submitted on the date on which the President is next required to submit a report under the P.L.O. Commitments Compliance Act of 1989 (title VIII of Public Law 101-246) and may be combined with such report.

SEC. 4. IMPOSITION OF SANCTIONS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- If, in any report transmitted pursuant to section 3, the President determines that the PLO or the Palestinian Authority, as appropriate, has not complied with each of the commitments specified in section 2(1) and 2(3), or if the President fails to make a determination with respect to such compliance, the President shall, for a period of time not less than the period described in subsection (b), impose one or more of the following sanctions:

      (1) DENIAL OF VISAS TO PLO AND PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY OFFICIALS- The Secretary of State shall not issue a visa to any member of the PLO or any official of the Palestinian Authority.

      (2) DOWNGRADE IN STATUS OF PLO OFFICE IN THE UNITED STATES- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the President shall withdraw or terminate any waiver by the President of the requirements of section 1003 of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act of 1988 and 1989 (22 U.S.C. 5202) (prohibiting the establishment or maintenance of a Palestinian information office in the United States), and such section shall apply so as to prohibit the operation of a PLO or Palestinian Authority office in the United States from carrying out any function other than those functions carried out by the Palestinian information office in existence prior to the Oslo Accords.

      (3) DESIGNATION AS A FOREIGN TERRORIST ORGANIZATION- The President shall designate the PLO, or one or more of its constituent groups (including Fatah and Tanzim) or groups operating as arms of the Palestinian Authority (including Force 17) as a foreign terrorist organization, in accordance with section 219(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

      (4) PROHIBITION ON UNITED STATES ASSISTANCE TO THE WEST BANK AND GAZA- United States assistance (except humanitarian assistance) shall not be provided to programs or projects in the West Bank or Gaza.

    (b) DURATION OF SANCTIONS- The period of time referred to in subsection (a) is the period of time commencing on the date that the report pursuant to section 3 was transmitted and ending on the later of--

      (1) the date that is six months after such date; or

      (2) the date that the next report under section 3 is required to be transmitted.

    (c) WAIVER AUTHORITY- The President may waive any or all of the sanctions imposed under subsection (a) if the President determines that such a waiver is in the national security interest of the United States. The President shall report such a determination to the appropriate congressional committees.

END