S. 2215 (107th): Syria Accountability Act of 2002

107th Congress, 2001–2002. Text as of Apr 18, 2002 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO

S 2215 IS

107th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 2215

To halt Syrian support for terrorism, end its occupation of Lebanon, stop its development of weapons of mass destruction, cease its illegal importation of Iraqi oil, and by so doing hold Syria accountable for its role in the Middle East, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

April 18, 2002

Mrs. BOXER (for herself and Mr. SANTORUM) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations


A BILL

To halt Syrian support for terrorism, end its occupation of Lebanon, stop its development of weapons of mass destruction, cease its illegal importation of Iraqi oil, and by so doing hold Syria accountable for its role in the Middle East, 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 ‘Syria Accountability Act of 2002’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:

      (1) On September 20, 2001, President George Bush stated at a joint session of Congress that ‘[e]very nation, in every region, now has a decision to make . . . [e]ither you are with us, or you are with the terrorists . . . [f]rom this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime’.

      (2) United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 (September 28, 2001) mandates that all states ‘refrain from providing any form of support, active or passive, to entities or persons involved in terrorist acts’, take ‘the necessary steps to prevent the commission of terrorist acts’, and ‘deny safe haven to those who finance, plan, support, or commit terrorist acts’.

      (3) The Government of Syria is currently prohibited by United States law from receiving United States assistance because it is listed as state sponsor of terrorism.

      (4) Although the Department of State lists Syria as a state sponsor of terrorism and reports that Syria provides ‘safe haven and support to several terrorist groups’, fewer United States sanctions apply with respect to Syria than with respect to any other country that is listed as a state sponsor of terrorism.

      (5) Terrorist groups, including Hizballah, Hamas, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command maintain offices, training camps, and other facilities on Syrian territory and operate in areas of Lebanon occupied by the Syrian armed forces and receive supplies from Iran through Syria.

      (6) United Nations Security Council Resolution 520 (September 17, 1982) calls for ‘strict respect of the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and political independence of Lebanon under the sole and exclusive authority of the Government of Lebanon through the Lebanese Army throughout Lebanon’.

      (7) More than 20,000 Syrian troops and security personnel occupy much of the sovereign territory of Lebanon exerting undue influence upon its government and undermining its political independence.

      (8) Since 1990 the Senate and House of Representatives have passed seven bills and resolutions which call for the withdrawal of Syrian armed forces from Lebanon.

      (9) Large and increasing numbers of the Lebanese people from across the political spectrum in Lebanon have mounted peaceful and democratic calls for the withdrawal of the Syrian Army from Lebanese soil.

      (10) Israel has withdrawn all of its armed forces from Lebanon in accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 425 (March 19, 1978), as certified by the United Nations Secretary General.

      (11) Even in the face of this United Nations certification that acknowledged Israel’s full compliance with Resolution 425, Syria permits attacks by Hizballah and other militant organizations on Israeli outposts at Shebaa Farms, under the false guise that it remains Lebanese land, and is also permitting attacks on civilian targets in Israel.

      (12) Syria will not allow Lebanon--a sovereign country--to fulfill its obligation in accordance with Security Council Resolution 425 to deploy its troops to southern Lebanon.

      (13) As a result, the Israeli-Lebanese border and much of southern Lebanon is under the control of Hizballah which continues to attack Israeli positions and allows Iranian Revolutionary Guards and other militant groups to operate freely in the area, destabilizing the entire region.

      (14) The United States provides $40,000,000 in assistance to the Lebanese people through private nongovernmental organizations, $7,900,000 of which is provided to Lebanese-American educational institutions.

      (15) In the State of the Union address on January 29, 2002, President Bush declared that the United States will ‘work closely with our coalition to deny terrorists and their state sponsors the materials, technology, and expertise to make and deliver weapons of mass destruction’.

      (16) The Government of Syria continues to develop and deploy short and medium range ballistic missiles.

      (17) The Government of Syria is pursuing the development and production of biological and chemical weapons.

      (18) United Nations Security Council Resolution 661 (August 6, 1990) and subsequent relevant resolutions restrict the sale of oil and other commodities by Iraq, except to the extent authorized by other relevant resolutions.

      (19) Syria, a non-permanent United Nations Security Council member, is receiving between 150,000 and 200,000 barrels of oil from Iraq in violation of Security Council Resolution 661 and subsequent relevant resolutions.

      (20) Syrian President Bashar Assad promised Secretary of State Powell in February 2001 to end violations of Security Council Resolution 661 but this pledge has not been fulfilled.

SEC. 3. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that--

      (1) the Government of Syria should immediately and unconditionally halt support for terrorism, permanently and openly declare its total renunciation of all forms of terrorism, and close all terrorist offices and facilities in Syria, including the offices of Hamas, Hizballah, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command;

      (2) the Government of Syria should immediately declare its commitment to completely withdraw its armed forces, including military, paramilitary, and security forces, from Lebanon, and set a firm timetable for such withdrawal;

      (3) the Government of Lebanon should deploy the Lebanese armed forces to all areas of Lebanon, including South Lebanon, in accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 520 (September 17, 1982), in order to assert the sovereignty of the Lebanese state over all of its territory, and should evict all terrorist and foreign forces from southern Lebanon, including Hizballah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards;

      (4) the Government of Syria should halt the development and deployment of short and medium range ballistic missiles and cease the development and production of biological and chemical weapons;

      (5) the Government of Syria should halt illegal imports and transshipments of Iraqi oil and come into full compliance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 661 and subsequent relevant resolutions;

      (6) the Governments of Lebanon and Syria should enter into serious unconditional bilateral negotiations with the Government of Israel in order to realize a full and permanent peace; and

      (7) the United States should continue to provide humanitarian and educational assistance to the people of Lebanon only through appropriate private, nongovernmental organizations and appropriate international organizations, until such time as the Government of Lebanon asserts sovereignty and control over all of its territory and borders and achieves full political independence, as called for in United Nations Security Council Resolution 520.

SEC. 4. STATEMENT OF POLICY.

    It should be the policy of the United States that--

      (1) Syria will be held responsible for all attacks committed by Hizballah and other terrorist groups with offices or other facilities in Syria, or bases in areas of Lebanon occupied by Syria;

      (2) the United States will work to deny Syria the ability to support acts of international terrorism and efforts to develop or acquire weapons of mass destruction;

      (3) the Secretary of State will continue to list Syria as a state sponsor of terrorism until Syria ends its support for terrorism, including its support of Hizballah and other terrorist groups in Lebanon and its hosting of terrorist groups in Damascus, and comes into full compliance with United States law relating to terrorism and United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 (September 28, 2001);

      (4) the full restoration of Lebanon’s sovereignty, political independence, and territorial integrity is in the national security interest of the United States;

      (5) Syria is in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 520 (September 17, 1982) through its continued occupation of Lebanese territory and its encroachment upon its political independence;

      (6) Syria’s obligation to withdraw from Lebanon is not conditioned upon progress in the Israeli-Syrian or Israeli-Lebanese peace process but derives from Syria’s obligation under Security Council Resolution 520;

      (7) Syria’s acquisition of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs threaten the security of the Middle East and the national interests of the United States;

      (8) Syria is in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 661 (August 6, 1990) and subsequent relevant resolutions through its continued purchase of oil from Iraq; and

      (9) the United States will not provide any assistance to Syria and will oppose multilateral assistance for Syria until Syria withdraws its armed forces from Lebanon, halts the development and deployment of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles, and complies with Security Council Resolution 661 and subsequent relevant resolutions.

SEC. 5. SANCTIONS.

    (a) SANCTIONS- Until the President makes the determination that Syria meets the requirements described in paragraphs (1) through (4) of subsection (c) and certifies such determination to Congress in accordance with such subsection--

      (1) the President shall prohibit the export to Syria of any item, including the issuance of a license for the export of any item on the United States Munitions List or Commerce Control List of dual-use items in the Export Administration Regulations (15 C.F.R. part 730 et seq.);

      (2) the President shall prohibit United States Government assistance, including loans, credits, or other financial assistance, to United States businesses with respect to investment or other activities in Syria;

      (3) the President shall prohibit the conduct of programs of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and the Trade and Development Agency in or with respect to Syria; and

      (4) the President shall impose two or more of the following sanctions:

        (A) Prohibit the export of products of the United States (other than food and medicine) to Syria.

        (B) Prohibit United States businesses from investing or operating in Syria.

        (C) Restrict Syrian diplomats in Washington, D.C., and at the United Nations in New York City, to travel only within a 25-mile radius of Washington, D.C., or the United Nations headquarters building, respectively.

        (D) Reduce United States diplomatic contacts with Syria (other than those contacts required to protect United States interests or carry out the purposes of this Act).

        (E) Block transactions in any property in which the Government of Syria has any interest, by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

    (b) WAIVER- The President may waive the application of either paragraph (2) or (3) (or both) of subsection (a) if the President determines that it is in the national security interest of the United States to do so.

    (c) CERTIFICATION- A certification under this subsection is a certification transmitted to the appropriate congressional committees of a determination made by the President that--

      (1) the Government of Syria does not provide support for international terrorist groups and does not allow terrorist groups, such as Hamas, Hizballah, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command to maintain facilities in Syria;

      (2) the Government of Syria has withdrawn all Syrian military, intelligence, and other security personnel from Lebanon;

      (3) the Government of Syria has ceased the development and deployment of ballistic missiles and has ceased the development and production of biological and chemical weapons; and

      (4) the Government of Syria is no longer in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 661 and subsequent relevant resolutions.

SEC. 6. REPORT.

    (a) REPORT- Not later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 12 months thereafter until the conditions described in paragraphs (1) through (4) of section 5(c) are satisfied, the Secretary of State shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on--

      (1) Syria’s progress toward meeting the conditions described in paragraphs (1) through (4) of section 5(c); and

      (2) connections, if any, between individual terrorists and terrorist groups which maintain offices, training camps, or other facilities on Syrian territory, or operate in areas of Lebanon occupied by the Syrian armed forces, and the attacks against the United States that occurred on September 11, 2001, and other terrorist attacks on the United States or its citizens, installations, or allies.

    (b) FORM- The report submitted under subsection (a) shall be in unclassified form but may include a classified annex.

SEC. 7. DEFINITION OF APPROPRIATE CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES.

    In this Act, the term ‘appropriate congressional committees’ means the Committee on International Relations of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate.