Committee on International Relations

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Henry J. Hyde, Chairman

 

9-11 Commission Report Findings and Proposed Implementing Legislation within the Jurisdiction of the House International Relations Committee
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Proposal authored by Chairman Hyde addresses specific legislative provisions outlined by the 9-11 Commission to improve the Nations ability to deal with the threat of terrorism in the 21st Century
 

bulletCurbs use of bogus U.S. visas and passports.

     Establishes new criminal penalties for possession and transfer of fraudulent visas and passports.

     Establishes an Office of Visa and Passport Security within the Department of State to develop and implement a strategic plan targeting those involved in document fraud.

     Expands the Immigration Security Initiative to include 50 airports worldwide to assist more airline personnel in identifying fraudulent travel documents.

     Requires full implementation of an Entry-Exit System at U.S. ports of entry.

     Urges the President to lobby for improved international standards for translation of names into the Roman alphabet for international travel documents and name-based watch lists. 

     Requires a feasibility study on the introduction of biometric, tamper-resistant machine-readable passports and travel history database.

     Expands from 14 to 39 the number of airports worldwide now undertaking pre-inspection of U.S.-bound passengers.

     Requires an addition of 600 consular officers at U.S. embassies worldwide by 2009; limits use of foreign nationals to screen nonimmigrant visa applicants at U.S. embassies and consulates.

     Requires the assignment of antifraud specialists to the 100 embassies and consulates worldwide with the greatest incidences of fraud.  

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Identifies and halts the growth of terrorist sanctuaries.

     Amends the Export Administration Act to regulate trade in dual-use technology with nations that tolerate terrorist sanctuaries.

     Encourages the development of an International Terrorism Interdiction Initiative to secure multilateral support for attacks on terrorists. 

bulletTightens U.S. law to prevent proliferation of weapons technologies worldwide.

     Mandates a review of U.S. nonproliferation policies by independent, nongovernmental experts to identify gaps, ineffective measures, and unexploited opportunities for the development of remedial policies. 

bulletReinvigorates U.S. diplomacy, particularly ongoing efforts to reach out to a broader worldwide population, to explain and defend U.S. foreign policy.

     Requires the Secretary of State to develop annually a public diplomacy strategy and to evaluate the effectiveness of its efforts to explain U.S. policies to foreign audiences. 

     Requires Foreign Service officers to accept a tour of duty in a public diplomacy position as a condition for promotion into the senior ranks of the Department.

     Requires the State Department to seek individuals with applicable public relations and language skills to enhance the Departments public diplomacy capabilities.

     Provides grants to American-sponsored schools in Arab and other predominantly Muslim countries.

      SEQ CHAPTER \h \r 1Requires the State Department to include the promotion of free press and development of professional journalists in the U.S. public diplomacy program strategy.

     Requires additional efforts against biased or false foreign media coverage of the United States.  

bulletBuilds ties to key Muslim states.

     Makes our assistance program for Afghanistan more effective, and urges greater coordination among agencies of the U.S. Government and allies to tackle the growing problem of narcotics, a major source of terrorist financing and political instability.

     Enables additional support to be provided to Pakistan.

     Requires a strategy to be implemented which will reverse the trend toward extremism in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere in the Middle East.