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S. 3199: Ethiopia Peace and Stabilization Act of 2022


The text of the bill below is as of Apr 6, 2022 (Reported by Senate Committee).


II

Calendar No. 336

117th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 3199

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

November 4, 2021

(for himself, Mr. Risch, Mr. Coons, and Mr. Tillis) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

April 6, 2022

Reported by , with an amendment

Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert the part printed in italic

A BILL

To promote peace and democracy in Ethiopia, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Ethiopia Peace and Democracy Promotion Act of 2021.

2.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Appropriate congressional committees

The term appropriate congressional committees means the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives.

(2)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of State.

3.

Findings

Congress makes the following findings:

(1)

The United States and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia share an important relationship and more than a century of diplomatic relations.

(2)

Ethiopia is the second most populous country in Africa and plays a key role in advancing security and stability across sub-Saharan Africa, including as a top contributor of uniformed personnel to United Nations peacekeeping missions and as host country to the African Union.

(3)

Amid proliferating popular protests in 2018, against decades of authoritarian rule, Ethiopia’s governing Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) selected Abiy Ahmed as Prime Minister, who upon taking office embarked on a program of political and economic reform that was soon encumbered by widespread inter-communal conflict, political assassinations, and democratic backsliding.

(4)

Tensions between Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the leadership of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), who, until 2019, were EPRDF coalition partners, deteriorated significantly throughout 2019–2020, with the EPRDF’s transformation into the Prosperity Party (PP), the Federal Government of Ethiopia’s postponement of the 2020 elections, and the TPLF’s decision to hold elections in Tigray Regional State of Ethiopia despite Federal objections, all serving as major catalysts.

(5)

In the early hours of November 4, 2020, Prime Minister Abiy ordered a military offensive in response to an attack by the TPLF on the Northern Command of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF), which TPLF officials have asserted was an act of self-defense in the face of an imminent invasion by Federal forces.

(6)

Throughout November 2020, hostilities between the ENDF and forces loyal to the TPLF evolved into a large-scale armed conflict that also involved the Eritrean Defense Forces (EDF) and Amhara regional forces and militia fighting in support of the Federal Government.

(7)

Despite repeated calls from the United States and its international partners for a full and verifiable Eritrean withdrawal from Ethiopia, which date back to November 2020, Eritrean forces remain in Ethiopia.

(8)

Fighting between TPLF aligned forces and the ENDF and its allies persists in parts of Tigray, and has spread to Amhara and Afar, and is estimated to have resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of individuals, prompted more than 61,000 Ethiopians to seek refuge in Sudan, and internally displaced over 2,000,000.

(9)

The war has disrupted harvests, livelihoods, markets, and banking, and critical public infrastructure was systematically looted and destroyed during the course of the conflict, including health centers and schools, with the majority of the reports implicating the ENDF, the EDF, and allied militia. Supply chains and food were allegedly looted by ENDF, EDF, and allied militia, which collectively contributed to conditions that have resulted in 400,000–900,000 Ethiopians living in famine-like conditions and a further 1,800,000 close to that threshold, according to an analysis issued in June 2021.

(10)

Interruptions in electricity, internet, and telephone services imposed by the Federal Government of Ethiopia continue to hamper humanitarian relief efforts and enable impunity from armed actors on all sides of the conflict by restricting the flow of information about human rights and humanitarian conditions in the region.

(11)

Despite repeated assurances from the Federal Government of Ethiopia that it would allow unfettered humanitarian access to Tigray, it continues to impose wide-ranging bureaucratic obstacles that impede the relief efforts of international humanitarian organizations, and encourage and deploy hostile rhetoric toward international humanitarian organizations that endanger the safety and security of their staff on the ground.

(12)

Twenty-three aid workers have been killed in the course of the conflict in northern Ethiopia, including an aid worker employed by a United States Agency for International Development implementing partner, who was reportedly executed by Ethiopian and Eritrean forces in May 2021, and 3 Doctors Without Borders employees in June 2021, by unknown armed actors.

(13)

Parties to the conflict in northern Ethiopia have been accused of extra-judicial killings, rape, and ethnic cleansing that may amount to war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide.

(14)

Two Eritrean refugee camps in Tigray, Shimelba and Hitsats, were attacked and destroyed by armed actors in November 2020 through January 2021, and refugees subjected to killings, abductions, and forced returns.

(15)

As of October 31, 2021, total United States Government humanitarian assistance in fiscal years 2020 and 2021 for the northern Ethiopia crisis response totaled $617,387,662, making it the single largest donor of humanitarian aid to the humanitarian crisis in northern Ethiopia since the conflict began.

(16)

In July 2021, TPLF aligned forces launched military operations into some occupied portions neighboring Amhara and Afar regions, displacing hundreds of thousands of Amhara and Afar civilians, and giving rise to allegations of serious abuses by Tigrayan forces against civilians in those two regions, as well as against Eritrean refugees residing in the Mai Aini and Adi Harush camps.

(17)

The TPLF’s July 2021 offensive was followed by reports of escalating abuses against Tigrayan civilians in various parts of Ethiopia and the alleged killing of Tigrayans in Humera, all of which occur within a context of incendiary and ethnicized public statements from Ethiopian officials and media platforms.

(18)

The Federal Government of Ethiopia responded to TPLF offensives in July through August 2021 by pursuing mass military mobilization, including the mobilization of regional special forces and ethnic militia from various parts of the country, in an effort to thwart and roll back TPLF operations.

(19)

In August 2021, officials from the TPLF and Oromo Liberation Army (OLA), a rebel group engaged in armed struggle primarily in the Oromia region, publicly confirmed they had entered an alliance designed to coordinate their military operations against the Federal Government of Ethiopia, developments which occurred against the backdrop of TPLF advances in Amhara region and increased OLA activity in Oromia.

(20)

In September 2021, the Federal Government of Ethiopia announced it was expelling seven senior United Nations officials, and in October 2021 commenced an air offensive on the Tigrayan capital, Mekele, which has further exacerbated the inability of international aid organizations to deliver food.

(21)

In October, state-owned Ethiopia Television reported that Prime Minister Abiy stated that, [i]f we make sure that this thing called wheat [food aid] does not enter Ethiopia, 70 per cent of Ethiopia's problems will be solved, implying that he may stop the delivery of international food aid altogether.

(22)

In October 2021, a United Nations Humanitarian Air Services flight that had been cleared by Federal authorities to land in Mekelle to deliver food aid was forced to abort landing due to air raids, threatening the lives of 11 United Nations and non-governmental staff on board.

(23)

In the wake of military advances by the Tigray Defense Forces in late October 2021, Prime Minister Abiy urged citizens to take up arms to defend themselves, and on November 2, 2021, Ethiopia declared a 6-month state of emergency.

(24)

On November 3, 2021, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights released the Joint Investigation into Alleged Violations of International Human Rights, Humanitarian and Refugee Law Committed by all Parties to the Conflict in the Tigray Region of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, which found that attacks on civilians and civilian objects, as well as indiscriminate attacks by ENDF, EDF, and TSF Tigray Special Forces] in violation of international humanitarian law … may amount to war crimes, and that these groups and affiliated militia committed acts in violation of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

(25)

The escalating conflict between the Federal Government of Ethiopia and its allies and the TPLF and OLA occurs in the context of a broader deterioration of political conditions across the country, including persistent inter-communal violence, expanding repression against journalists, opposition parties, and dissident voices, and highly contentious national elections conducted in June to July 2021 that did not meet internationally accepted standards.

(26)

Ethiopia’s crisis is nested within a complex regional environment, the most important dimensions of which are three-way tensions between Ethiopia, Egypt, and Sudan over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam border tensions between Sudan and Ethiopia over Al Fashaga, Eritrea’s muscular regional engagement, and increasing geopolitical competition in the Horn of Africa that involves the Gulf, Turkey, Iran, Russia, and the People’s Republic of China.

(27)

Working in conjunction with its international partners, the United States has consistently called for a political solution to the crisis, unfettered humanitarian access, an end to human rights violations, full accountability for all atrocities committed during the course of hostilities, and a broader all-inclusive national dialogue, and has taken a number of actions to encourage and incentivize a peaceful resolution to the conflict in Ethiopia, including reductions in development and security assistance, visa sanctions, and high-level diplomatic engagement.

(28)

On September 17, 2021, President Joseph R. Biden signed Executive Order No. 14046 Imposing Sanctions on Certain Persons With Respect to the Humanitarian and Human Rights Crisis in Ethiopia, which authorizes the United States to target parties responsible for or complicit in actions or policies that prolong the conflict in northern Ethiopia, and those that commit human rights abuses, or obstruct humanitarian access and a ceasefire with respect to the conflict.

(29)

The Federal Government of Ethiopia has rejected all offers to facilitate a diplomatic solution to the conflict, including those extended by African Union Chairman Cyril Ramaphosa in November 2020, and Intergovernmental Authorities on Development (IGAD) Chairman Abdalla Hamdok in August 2021, to mediate talks with the TPLF.

4.

Statement of policy

It is the policy of the United States to support a peaceful, democratic unified Ethiopia, and to use all diplomatic, development, and legal tools to support an end to the conflict that began in northern Ethiopia, an end to violence throughout Ethiopia, the promotion of an all-inclusive national dialogue, and the advancement of the human, civil, and political rights of all Ethiopians.

5.

Support for democracy and human rights in Ethiopia

(a)

In general

The Secretary, in consultation with the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, shall develop and implement a strategy for supporting democracy and human rights in Ethiopia that includes a description and justification of—

(1)

plans to support civil society efforts related to expanding citizen participation and political space;

(2)

plans to support all-inclusive national dialogue in Ethiopia;

(3)

plans to support justice and accountability mechanisms for abuses and atrocities committed in the course of the conflict;

(4)

plans to combat hate speech and disinformation in Ethiopia;

(5)

current and planned democracy and governance support to government institutions in Ethiopia; and

(6)
(A)

results of the most recent impact evaluation of these activities; and

(B)

plans for applying lessons learned from such evaluations.

(b)

Report to Congress

Not less than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit the strategy required in subsection (a) to the appropriate congressional committees.

6.

Support for conflict resolution, mitigation and management, and reconciliation

(a)

Conflict resolution

The President is authorized to provide financial, technical, and diplomatic support for—

(1)

efforts by the African Union or other credible entities engaged in efforts to help bring about a peaceful resolution to the conflict in northern Ethiopia; and

(2)

efforts by civil society, especially those from marginalized communities, women, and youth, to participate and engage in peacebuilding, mediation, and community reconciliation.

(b)

Conflict mitigation and reconciliation

The Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development shall develop and implement a strategy, coordinated with the Secretary as relevant, to support conflict mitigation and management, and reconciliation and trauma healing for conflict affected groups in Ethiopia that includes—

(1)

an analysis of the drivers of conflict in Ethiopia;

(2)

a comprehensive plan to mitigate and manage conflict;

(3)

an emphasis on community-led grass roots reconciliation;

(4)

specific steps the Agency will take to ensure the participation of traditionally marginalized communities and ethnic groups, women, and youth;

(5)

plans to ensure that all assistance programs that are directly aimed at benefitting the Ethiopian people or building the capacity of civil society to incorporate, to the extent practicable, community-based conflict mitigation and management, violence prevention, peacebuilding interventions, reconciliation activities, psychosocial support, and trauma healing;

(6)

a clear statement of—

(A)

the goals and expected outcomes of the strategy; and

(B)

the means through which progress towards those goals will be met including through regular rigorous evaluations; and

(7)

plans for updating and revising the current Country Development Cooperation Strategy to include elements of the strategy required under this subsection.

(c)

Submission

The strategy required under subsection (b) shall be submitted to the appropriate congressional committees not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

7.

Actions in support of peace and stability in Ethiopia

(a)

Sanctions for actions undermining transition to democracy

(1)

In general

The President shall impose the sanctions described in paragraph (2) with respect to any foreign person that the President determines—

(A)

undermines efforts with respect to a peaceful negotiated settlement to end hostilities in northern Ethiopia;

(B)

through business dealings with senior leadership of the Government of Ethiopia or the Government of Eritrea, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, or other parties to the conflict in and around northern Ethiopia, derives significant financial benefit or political power from policies or actions, including electoral fraud, human rights abuses, or corruption, that contribute to the conflict or impede a transition to democracy in Ethiopia;

(C)

provides to any party involved in hostilities in Ethiopia—

(i)

weapon systems, such as firearms, unmanned aerial systems, helicopters, munitions used by such unmanned aerial systems or helicopters, battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, or munitions for such tanks and vehicles, missiles or missile systems; armed vehicles; or

(ii)

support for such systems, such as ammunition, spare parts, pilots or other operators; or

(D)

knowingly facilitates or finances the sale, operation, or transfer of weapons to any party involved in hostilities in Ethiopia.

(2)

Sanctions described

The sanctions to be imposed under paragraph (1) with respect to a foreign person are the following:

(A)

Property blocking

The exercise of all powers granted to the President by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) to the extent necessary to block and prohibit all transactions in all property and interests in property of the foreign person if such property and interests in property are in the United States, come within the United States, or are or come within the possession or control of a United States person.

(B)

Aliens inadmissible for visas, admission, or parole

(i)

Visas, admission, or parole

An alien described in paragraph (1) is—

(I)

inadmissible to the United States;

(II)

ineligible to receive a visa or other documentation to enter the United States; and

(III)

otherwise ineligible to be admitted or paroled into the United States or to receive any other benefit under the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.).

(ii)

Current visas revoked

(I)

In general

The visa or other entry documentation of an alien described in paragraph (1) shall be revoked, regardless of when such visa or other entry documentation is or was issued.

(II)

Immediate effect

A revocation under subclause (I) shall—

(aa)

take effect immediately; and

(bb)

automatically cancel any other valid visa or entry documentation that is in the alien's possession.

(3)

Exceptions

(A)

Exception relating to importation of goods

(i)

In general

The authority or a requirement to impose sanctions under this section shall not include the authority or a requirement to impose sanctions on the importation of goods.

(ii)

Good defined

In this subparagraph, the term good means any article, natural or manmade substance, material, supply, or manufactured product, including inspection and test equipment, and excluding technical data.

(B)

Exception to comply with United Nations headquarters agreement and law enforcement objectives

Sanctions under paragraph (2)(B) shall not apply to an alien if admitting the alien into the United States—

(i)

is necessary to permit the United States to comply with the Agreement regarding the Headquarters of the United Nations, signed at Lake Success on June 26, 1947, and entered into force November 21, 1947, between the United Nations and the United States, or other applicable international obligations of the United States; or

(ii)

would further important law enforcement objectives.

(4)

Implementation; penalties

(A)

Implementation

The President may exercise all authorities provided under sections 203 and 205 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1702 and 1704) to carry out this subsection.

(B)

Penalties relating to property blocking

A person that violates, attempts to violate, conspires to violate, or causes a violation of subparagraph (A) of paragraph (2) or any regulation, license, or order issued to carry out either such subparagraph shall be subject to the penalties set forth in subsections (b) and (c) of section 206 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1705) to the same extent as a person that commits an unlawful act described in subsection (a) of that section.

(5)

Definitions

In this subsection:

(A)

Admission; admitted; alien

The terms admission, admitted, and alien have the meanings given those terms in section 101 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101).

(B)

Foreign person

The term foreign person means a person that is not a United States person.

(C)

Knowingly

The term knowingly, with respect to conduct, a circumstance, or a result, means that a person has actual knowledge, or should have known, of the conduct, the circumstance, or the result.

(D)

United states person

The term United States person means—

(i)

a United States citizen, an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence to the United States, or any other individual subject to the jurisdiction of the United States; or

(ii)

an entity organized under the laws of the United States or of any jurisdiction within the United States, including a foreign branch of such entity.

(b)

Limitations on export of defense and dual-Use items to Ethiopia and Eritrea

(1)

Dual-use items

A license shall be required under section 1754(c)(1)(A) of the Export Control Reform Act of 2018 (50 U.S.C. 4813(c)(1)(A)) for the export, reexport, or in-country transfer to Ethiopia or Eritrea of items described in clause (ii) of that section.

(2)

Defense items

No license may be issued for the export to Ethiopia or Eritrea of any item on the United States Munitions List under section 38(a)(1) of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2778(a)(1)) on January 1, 2016.

(c)

Prohibition and suspension of certain assistance to Ethiopia

(1)

Support by United States International Development Finance Corporation

The United States International Development Finance Corporation may not provide support under title II of the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development Act of 2018 (22 U.S.C. 9621 et seq.) for projects in Ethiopia.

(2)

Termination

The prohibition under paragraph (1) shall not apply on or after the date that is 30 days after the Secretary of State determines and certifies to the appropriate congressional committees that the Government of Ethiopia and its proxies and allies have—

(A)

ceased all offensive military operations in northern Ethiopia;

(B)

taken steps toward a genuine political dialogue to achieve an end to the conflict;

(C)

implemented measures to better protect human rights and ensure adherence to international humanitarian law and international human rights law;

(D)

continuously allowed unfettered humanitarian access; and

(E)

cooperated with independent investigations of credible allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other human rights abuses carried out in the course of hostilities.

(d)

Multilateral sanctions

The Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Commerce, as appropriate, should engage with members of the United Nations Security Council, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union, the African Union, and any other relevant actors to achieve a coordinated imposition of multilateral sanctions and export controls on persons described in subsection (a)(1).

8.

Security assistance

(a)

Suspension of assistance

All security assistance being provided to the Government of Ethiopia by the United States Government shall immediately be suspended until such time as the Secretary reports to the appropriate congressional committees that hostilities in northern Ethiopia and related conflicts have ended, and the parties to the conflict are engaged in good faith efforts to reach a comprehensive peace agreement.

(b)

Report

Not later than 15 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall provide to the appropriate congressional committees a comprehensive list of all assistance halted in compliance with subsection (a) as of the date of the enactment of this Act.

9.

Assistance to the government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia provided through international financial institutions

(a)

Restrictions

The Secretary of the Treasury shall instruct the United States Executive Directors of the international financial institutions—

(1)

to use the voice and vote of the United States in those institutions to oppose any loan or extension of financial or technical assistance to the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea; and

(2)

to work with other key donor countries to develop a coordinated policy with respect to lending to the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea aimed at advancing human rights and promoting peace.

(b)

Exception for humanitarian purposes

The restrictions under paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (a) shall not apply with respect to loans or financial or technical assistance provided for humanitarian purposes, including efforts to prevent, detect, and respond to the COVID–19 pandemic, or any other infectious disease threat that is declared by the World Health Organization to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

(c)

Waiver for projects that directly support basic human needs

The Secretary of the Treasury may waive the application of the restriction under subsection (a)(1) only if the Secretary of the Treasury submits to the appropriate congressional committees a written determination, arrived at with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, that the waiver is being exercised to support projects that directly support basic, life-saving human needs.

(d)

Termination

Subsection (a)(1) shall not apply on or after the date that is 30 days after the Secretary of State determines and certifies to the appropriate congressional committees that the Government of Ethiopia and its proxies and allies have—

(1)

ceased all offensive military operations in northern Ethiopia and conflict in surrounding areas of Ethiopia;

(2)

taken steps toward a genuine political dialogue to achieve an end to the conflict;

(3)

implemented measures to better protect human rights and ensure adherence to international humanitarian law and international human rights law;

(4)

continuously allowed unfettered humanitarian access; and

(5)

cooperated with independent investigations of credible allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and other human rights abuses carried out in the course of hostilities.

(e)

Briefing

Not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act and every 120 days thereafter until the restrictions in subsection (a)(1) are terminated pursuant to subsection (d), the Secretary of the Treasury, in conjunction with the Secretary and the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, or their designees, shall brief the appropriate congressional committees on the efforts of the United States Executive Directors of the international financial institutions pursuant to subsection (a).

10.

Support for accountability

(a)

In General

The President is authorized to provide financial, technical, and diplomatic support for efforts to pursue accountability for war crimes and crimes against humanity, including any preliminary activities necessary to preserve evidence of crimes in Ethiopia, with the goal of promoting accountability for war crimes, crimes against humanity, or other violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law that have taken place in the course of hostilities in northern Ethiopia or other areas of Ethiopia.

(b)

Provision of information

The President is authorized to share information possessed by the United States Government with organizations engaged in a credible investigation meant to lead to the prosecution of any individual credibly accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity, or other violations of international human rights law or international humanitarian law in accordance with this section.

11.

Arms-related, financial, and other reporting requirements

(a)

Report on certain activities and finances of senior officials of the governments of ethiopia and eritrea and armed opposition groups

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter until the date that is 2 years after the end of hostilities in the Tigray region, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that—

(1)

describes the actions and involvement of any senior officials of the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea and any senior leaders in the party to the conflict in northern Ethiopia and related conflicts—

(A)

facilitating or financing the sale or transfers of arms or weapons to any party to the hostilities in Ethiopia, including the Government of Ethiopia, the Government of Eritrea, opposition groups, militias, or other armed groups active in the conflict in Ethiopia;

(B)

directing, carrying out, or ordering violations of human rights including the systemic use of rape and sexual and gender based violence;

(C)

directing, carrying out, or ordering the use or recruitment of children by armed groups or armed forces; and

(D)

directing, carrying out, or ordering significant acts of corruption;

(2)

identifies Ethiopian, Eritrean, and other foreign financial institutions in which senior officials of the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea whose actions are described in paragraph (1), and senior leaders of parties to the conflict in northern Ethiopia and related conflicts in the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia whose actions are described in paragraph (1), hold significant assets, and provides an assessment of the value of such assets; and

(3)

identifies Ethiopian, Eritrean, and foreign financial institutions that knowingly facilitate or finance the sale or transfer of weapons, arms, or non-lethal equipment intended or altered by a third party for military use to any party to the hostilities in Ethiopia.

(b)

Form

The report required under subsection (a) shall be submitted in unclassified form, but may contain a classified annex.

(c)

Report on progress on accountability in Ethiopia

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 180 days thereafter, the Secretary of State shall submit to Congress a report on progress towards holding individuals in Ethiopia and Eritrea accountable for human rights violations, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Ethiopia Peace and Stabilization Act of 2022.

2.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Appropriate congressional committees

The term appropriate congressional committees means the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate and the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives.

(2)

Civil conflict

The term civil conflict means the civil conflict that began in Ethiopia’s Tigray region in November 2020, and has since spread to other parts of the country.

(3)

Parties to the conflict

The term parties to the conflict means the state authorities and armed parties directly participating in the civil conflict in Ethiopia, including the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea, Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF), Tigray Defense Forces (TDF), Eritrean Defence Forces (EDF), Ethiopian regional forces, organized ethnic militia, and any other entity which the President determines to be among the parties to the conflict for purposes of this Act.

(4)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of State.

(5)

Senior official

The term senior official means—

(A)

the head of state or head of party;

(B)

the head of government;

(C)

a member of the cabinet or official exercising minister-level authority;

(D)

any other high ranking official in the defense, security, or foreign affairs apparatus of the government; or

(E)

any other office which the President determines to be a senior official for purposes of this Act.

3.

Sense of Congress

It is the sense of Congress that—

(1)

Ethiopia’s civil conflict directly threatens the unity of and undermines democracy in Ethiopia and threatens stability in the Horn of Africa;

(2)

northern Ethiopia has suffered from a prolonged blockade that has prevented the flow of humanitarian assistance, medical supplies, and fuel and created an unprecedented humanitarian crisis;

(3)

all parties to the civil conflict should immediately end hostilities and allow unfettered access to deliver humanitarian aid, negotiate a ceasefire, and begin negotiations towards a sustainable peace agreement;

(4)

the Government of Eritrea must immediately and completely withdraw its military forces from Ethiopia;

(5)

external actors must cease the sale and provision of all arms and materiel to all parties to the conflict;

(6)

the United States and the international community should prioritize delivering humanitarian aid to all areas in need of assistance, with an urgent focus on the provision of emergency food aid to communities that are currently facing famine conditions or food insecurity;

(7)

the United States should provide assistance for a peaceful negotiated settlement to the civil conflict, including assistance for stabilization, mitigation, reconciliation, and democracy strengthening;

(8)

the United States should impose restrictions on security and other related assistance;

(9)

all allegations of human rights abuses, war crimes, and crimes against humanity must be thoroughly investigated by a neutral credible body, and perpetrators must be held accountable; and

(10)

the United States and international community should seek to hold accountable governments, organizations, and individuals, including those in the diaspora who have—

(A)

incited the civil conflict and related violence in Ethiopia; and

(B)

spread disinformation as part or on behalf of a foreign government, political party, ethnic group, or organization to further the civil conflict or incite anti-American sentiment in Ethiopia.

4.

Statement of policy

It is the policy of the United States to support a peaceful, democratic, and unified Ethiopia by—

(1)

using all diplomatic, development, and legal tools to support a sustainable peace agreement;

(2)

supporting a credible, inclusive political process to unify the country that is convened by a mutually agreed upon party, individual, or group and that—

(A)

acknowledges the political nature of conflict;

(B)

seeks a political solution to support the resolution of grievances; and

(C)

charts a democratic and peaceful path forward for the country;

(3)

advancing the human, civil, and political rights of all Ethiopians regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender, or geographic area of origin; and

(4)

countering malign foreign influence and disinformation exacerbating the civil conflict and intercommunal violence.

5.

Support for democracy and human rights in Ethiopia

(a)

Sense of Congress

It is the sense of Congress that the United States must—

(1)

use all diplomatic levers at its disposal to secure the release of all political prisoners, including opposition leaders, supporters, journalists, and activists detained on the basis of their political activity or views, their ethnicity, or their reporting;

(2)

ensure the Government of Ethiopia respects the rights of all Ethiopians to free expression and political participation, without discrimination based on ethnicity, ideology, or political affiliation; and

(3)

support a credible mechanism that addresses grievances and charts a democratic and peaceful path forward for the country, and which includes representatives of all political parties, including those who have been detained as political prisoners, civil society organizations, and representatives of ethnic communities.

(b)

Strategy

(1)

In general

The Secretary, in consultation with the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, shall develop and implement a strategy for supporting democracy and the rule of law and adherence to international humanitarian law and relevant international human rights treaties in Ethiopia that includes a description and justification of—

(A)

plans to support civil society efforts related to expanding citizen participation and political space;

(B)

plans to support a credible, comprehensive political process to unify Ethiopia, which includes broad representation from civil society, political parties, ethnic communities, and religious groups;

(C)

plans to support respect for the rule of law, including justice and accountability mechanisms for abuses and atrocities committed in the course of the civil conflict;

(D)

plans to combat hate speech and disinformation in Ethiopia;

(E)

current and planned democracy and governance support to Ethiopia’s government institutions, including independent institutions like the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE);

(F)

plans for evaluating current and planned democracy and governance support and application of lessons learned; and

(G)

mechanisms for holding accountable individuals who impede democratic processes, perpetrate gross violations of human rights, or are credibly implicated in public corruption.

(2)

Report to Congress

Not less than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit the strategy required under paragraph (1) to the appropriate congressional committees.

(c)

Quarterly reports

(1)

In general

Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 90 days thereafter, the Secretary of State, after consultation with the heads of other Federal departments and agencies represented on the Atrocity Early Warning Task Force and with representatives of human rights organizations, shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that includes a determination with respect to whether actions in Ethiopia by parties to the conflict constitute—

(A)

genocide;

(B)

crimes against humanity; or

(C)

war crimes.

(2)

Form

Each report required by paragraph (1) shall—

(A)

clearly identify individuals or groups about which the determination in such paragraph is made; and

(B)

be submitted in unclassified form, but may include a classified annex that is provided separately.

(3)

Public availability

The Secretary shall make each report submitted under paragraph (1) available to the public on an internet website of the Department of State.

6.

Support for conflict resolution, mitigation and management, and reconciliation

(a)

Conflict resolution

The President is authorized to provide financial, technical, and diplomatic support for—

(1)

efforts by the African Union or other credible entities engaged in efforts to help bring about a peaceful resolution to conflict across Ethiopia; and

(2)

efforts by civil society, especially those from marginalized communities in all regions of Ethiopia, women, youth, and persons with disabilities, to participate and engage in peacebuilding, mediation, and community reconciliation.

(b)

Conflict mitigation and reconciliation

The Secretary shall ensure the development and implementation of a coordinated strategy, developed by the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development in coordination with relevant bureaus of the Department of State, to support conflict mitigation and management, reconciliation, and trauma healing for conflict affected groups in Ethiopia that includes—

(1)

an analysis of the drivers of conflict in Ethiopia;

(2)

a comprehensive plan to support efforts to mitigate and manage conflict with an emphasis on community-led grassroots reconciliation;

(3)

plans to support grass roots local mechanisms for dispute resolution and sustainable mechanisms to address grievances at the community level;

(4)

specific steps the Department of State and the United States Agency for International Development will take to ensure the participation of traditionally marginalized communities and ethnic groups, women, and youth;

(5)

plans to ensure that all assistance programs that aim to benefit the Ethiopian people or build the capacity of civil society incorporate, to the extent practicable, community-based conflict mitigation and management, violence prevention, peacebuilding interventions, reconciliation activities, psychosocial support, and trauma healing;

(6)

plans to ensure that all assistance programs that are directly aimed at benefitting the Ethiopian people are implemented based on need and do not discriminate on the basis of ethnic, regional, or political affiliations;

(7)

a clear statement of—

(A)

the goals and expected outcomes of the strategy; and

(B)

the means through which progress towards the strategy’s goals will be measured, including through regular evaluations; and

(8)

plans for updating and revising the current Country Development Cooperation Strategy to include elements of the strategy required under this subsection.

(c)

Submission

The Secretary shall submit the strategy required under subsection (b) to the appropriate congressional committees not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

7.

Actions in support of peace and stability in Ethiopia

(a)

Sanctions for actions undermining transition to democracy

(1)

In general

Beginning 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the President shall impose the sanctions described in paragraph (2) concerning any foreign person that the President determines—

(A)

has knowingly engaged in significant acts which have materially undermined or which are intended to undermine officially authorized efforts to negotiate a settlement to end the civil conflict;

(B)

has directly and materially contributed to an escalation of the civil conflict;

(C)

deliberately impedes the delivery of humanitarian assistance to any area of the country; or

(D)

through business dealings with senior leadership of the Government of Ethiopia or the Tigray People’s Liberation Front or other parties to the conflict, has knowingly derived significant financial or political benefit from the conflict or efforts made to impede a transition to democracy in Ethiopia through actions including directing or knowingly engaging in or facilitating—

(i)

electoral fraud;

(ii)

serious human rights abuses; or

(iii)

acts of public corruption.

(2)

Sanctions described

The sanctions that the President shall impose under paragraph (1) concerning a foreign person are the following:

(A)

Property blocking

The exercise of all powers granted to the President by the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) to the extent necessary to block and prohibit all transactions in all property and interests in property of the foreign person if such property and interests in property are in the United States, come within the United States, or come within the possession or control of a United States person.

(B)

Aliens inadmissible for visas, admission, or parole

(i)

Visas, admission, or parole

An alien described in paragraph (1) is—

(I)

inadmissible to the United States;

(II)

ineligible to receive a visa or other documentation to enter the United States; and

(III)

otherwise ineligible to be admitted or paroled into the United States or to receive any other benefit under the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.).

(ii)

Current visas revoked

(I)

In general

The United States shall revoke the visa or other entry documentation of an alien described in paragraph (1), regardless of when such visa or other entry documentation is or was issued.

(II)

Immediate effect

A revocation under subclause (I) shall—

(aa)

take effect immediately; and

(bb)

automatically cancel any other valid visa or entry documentation that is in the alien's possession.

(3)

Exceptions

(A)

Exception for intelligence activities

Sanctions under this section shall not apply to any activity subject to the reporting requirements under title V of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 3091 et seq.) or any authorized intelligence activities of the United States.

(B)

Exception to comply with international obligations and for law enforcement activities

Sanctions under paragraph (2)(B) shall not apply with respect to an alien if admitting or paroling the alien into the United States is necessary—

(i)

to permit the United States to comply with the Agreement regarding the Headquarters of the United Nations, signed at Lake Success June 26, 1947, and entered into force November 21, 1947, between the United Nations and the United States, or other applicable international obligations; or

(ii)

to carry out or assist law enforcement activity in the United States.

(C)

Exception relating to importation of goods

(i)

In general

The authorities and requirements to impose sanctions authorized under this subtitle shall not include the authority or a requirement to impose sanctions on the importation of goods.

(ii)

Good defined

In this paragraph, the term good means any article, natural or manmade substance, material, supply or manufactured product, including inspection and test equipment, and excluding technical data.

(4)

Implementation; penalties

(A)

Implementation

The President may exercise all authorities provided under sections 203 and 205 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1702 and 1704) to carry out this subsection.

(B)

Penalties relating to property blocking

A person that violates, attempts to violate, conspires to violate, or causes a violation of subparagraph (A) of paragraph (2) or any regulation, license, or order issued to carry out either such subparagraph shall be subject to the penalties set forth in subsections (b) and (c) of section 206 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1705) to the same extent as a person that commits an unlawful act described in subsection (a) of that section.

(5)

Definitions

In this subsection:

(A)

Admission; admitted; alien

The terms admission, admitted, and alien have the meanings given those terms in section 101 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101).

(B)

Appropriate committees of Congress

The term appropriate committees of Congress means the Committee on Foreign Relations of the Senate, the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate, the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives, and the Committee on Financial Services of the House of Representatives.

(C)

Foreign person

The term foreign person means a person that is not a United States person.

(D)

Knowingly

The term knowingly, with respect to conduct, a circumstance, or a result, means that a person has actual knowledge, or should have known, of the conduct, the circumstance, or the result.

(E)

United States person

The term United States person means—

(i)

a United States citizen, an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence to the United States, or any other individual subject to the jurisdiction of the United States; or

(ii)

an entity organized under the laws of the United States or of any jurisdiction within the United States, including a foreign branch of such entity.

(6)

Presidential waiver authority

The President may waive, on a case-by-case basis and for a period of not more than 180 days, subject to renewal, a requirement under this section to impose or maintain sanctions with respect to a person, only if the President submits to the appropriate committees of Congress—

(A)

a written determination that the waiver or renewal of a waiver is in the national security interests of the United States; or

(B)

a certification that the person that had engaged in otherwise sanctionable behavior has ceased engaging in such behavior and that there is not a risk that the person could engage in such behavior in the future.

(b)

Limitations on export of defense and dual-use items to Ethiopia and Eritrea

(1)

Dual-use items

A license shall be required under section 1754(c)(1)(A) of the Export Control Reform Act of 2018 (50 U.S.C. 4813(c)(1)(A)) for the export, re-export, or in-country transfer to Ethiopia or Eritrea of items described in clause (ii) of that section.

(2)

Defense items

No license may be issued for the export to Ethiopia or Eritrea of any item on the United States Munitions List under section 38(a)(1) of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2778(a)(1)) on January 1, 2016.

(c)

Prohibition and suspension of certain assistance to Ethiopia

(1)

Support by United States International Development Finance Corporation

The United States International Development Finance Corporation may not provide support under title II of the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development Act of 2018 (22 U.S.C. 9621 et seq.) for projects in Ethiopia.

(2)

Termination

The prohibition under paragraph (1) shall not apply on or after the date that the criteria outlined in section 13 have been met.

(3)

Presidential waiver authority

The President may waive, on a case-by-case basis, the prohibition under paragraph (1) if the President submits to the appropriate committees of Congress a written determination that the waiver is in the national security interests of the United States.

(d)

Multilateral sanctions

The Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and the Secretary of Commerce, as appropriate, should engage with members of the United Nations Security Council, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the European Union, the African Union, and any other relevant actors to achieve a coordinated imposition of multilateral sanctions and export controls on persons described in subsection (a)(1).

8.

Security assistance

(a)

Suspension of assistance

The United States shall immediately suspend all security assistance being provided to the Government of Ethiopia.

(b)

Presidential waiver authority

The President may waive the suspension in subsection (a) if the President submits to the appropriate committees of Congress a written determination that—

(1)

the waiver or renewal of a waiver is in the national security interests of the United States; and

(2)

the Government of Ethiopia and its proxies are taking steps toward a genuine negotiated settlement with the major parties to the conflict.

(c)

Termination

The suspension under subsection (a) shall not apply on or after the date that the criteria outlined in section 13 are met.

(d)

Report

Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall provide to the appropriate congressional committees a comprehensive list of all assistance halted in compliance with subsection (a) as of the date of the enactment of this Act.

9.

Assistance to the Government of Ethiopia provided through international financial institutions

(a)

Restrictions

The Secretary of the Treasury shall instruct the United States Executive Directors of the international financial institutions—

(1)

to use the voice and vote of the United States in those institutions to oppose any loan or extension of financial or technical assistance to the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea; and

(2)

to work with other key donor countries to develop a coordinated policy for lending to the Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea aimed at promoting peace and adherence to international humanitarian law and relevant international human rights treaties.

(b)

Exception for humanitarian purposes

The restrictions under paragraphs (1) and (2) of subsection (a) shall not apply to loans or financial or technical assistance provided for humanitarian purposes.

(c)

Waiver for projects that directly support basic human needs

The Secretary of the Treasury may waive the application of the restriction under subsection (a)(1) only if the Secretary of the Treasury submits to the appropriate congressional committees a written determination, arrived at with the concurrence of the Secretary of State, that the waiver supports projects that directly provides basic human needs.

(d)

Presidential waiver authority

The President may waive the application of the restriction under subsection (a)(1), on a case-by-case basis, if the President submits to the appropriate congressional committees a written determination that the waiver is in the national security interests of the United States.

(e)

Termination

Subsection (a)(1) shall not apply after the criteria outlined in section 13 are met.

(f)

Briefing

Not later than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act and every 120 days upon request until the restrictions in subsection (a)(1) are terminated pursuant to subsection (d), the Secretary of the Treasury, in conjunction with the Secretary of State and the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, or their designees, shall brief the appropriate congressional committees on the efforts of the United States Executive Directors of the international financial institutions pursuant to subsection (a).

10.

Support for accountability

(a)

In general

The President is authorized to provide technical and diplomatic support, including support for activities related to evidence preservation and information sharing, to credible accountability mechanisms with jurisdiction, to promote accountability for war crimes, crimes against humanity, or other violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law that took place in the 6 months preceding the outbreak of the civil conflict, and have taken place in the course of the civil conflict.

(b)

Report on progress on accountability in Ethiopia

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 180 days thereafter, the Secretary of State shall submit to Congress a report on progress towards holding individuals in Ethiopia and Eritrea accountable for atrocities, including war crimes and crimes against humanity.

11.

Certain activities and finances related to the conflict

(a)

In general

Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 90 days after that until the end of the civil conflict, the Secretary, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence and the Secretary of the Treasury, shall provide to the appropriate committees of Congress a report that includes—

(1)

a description of the actions and involvement of any senior officials of any party to the civil conflict—

(A)

facilitating or financing the sale or transfers of arms or weapons to any party to the civil conflict;

(B)

directing, carrying out, or ordering actions that lead to violations of international humanitarian law, including those involving the systemic use of rape;

(C)

directing, carrying out, or ordering the use or recruitment of children by armed groups or armed forces;

(D)

directing, carrying out, or engaging in significant acts of corruption;

(E)

directing, carrying out, or ordering the denial of humanitarian access, including by preventing humanitarian assistance or aid workers from reaching civilian populations;

(F)

directing, carrying out, or ordering the killing of aid workers in Ethiopia; and

(G)

directing, carrying out, or ordering the looting or destruction of civilian infrastructure in violation of international humanitarian law, including health facilities and schools;

(2)

a description of Ethiopian and other foreign financial institutions that identifies—

(A)

senior officials of the parties to the conflict whose actions, as identified in paragraph (1) who hold significant assets within a financial institution subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, and an estimated assessment of the value of such assets; and

(B)

Ethiopian and foreign financial institutions that knowingly facilitate or finance the sale or transfer of weapons, arms, or non-lethal equipment intended or altered by a third party for military use to any party to the civil conflict;

(3)

a description of the full extent of involvement in the civil conflict by foreign governments, including the Governments of China, Egypt, Eritrea, Iran, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates, and others as appropriate, which shall include—

(A)

a description of which governments have engaged in or supported the conduct of drone and aircraft strikes;

(B)

a list of the types and estimated amounts of arms and materiel transferred by each government identified under this paragraph, including drone aircraft, to the parties to the conflict or foreign military contractors operating in Ethiopia;

(C)

an estimate of significant financial support provided by each government identified under this paragraph to the parties to the conflict or foreign military contractors; and

(D)

a description of United States diplomatic engagement with the European Union and NATO regarding the support provided by the foreign governments, identified under this paragraph, to the parties to the conflict and foreign military contractors; and

(4)

a description of the full extent of involvement by Ethiopian diaspora and other non-Ethiopian nationals in military activities in the civil conflict, including—

(A)

a description of the Ethiopian diaspora and other non-Ethiopian nationals directly participating in the civil conflict either through on the ground fighting or support operations, providing financial or logistical support from abroad, or engaging in activities inciting the parties to the conflict; and

(B)

an estimate of significant financial support provided by Ethiopian diaspora and other non-Ethiopian nationals to the parties to the conflict.

(b)

Form

The Secretary shall submit the report required under subsection (a) in a classified form.

(c)

Briefing

Not later than 30 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and not less than 120 days thereafter upon request until the Secretary determines the requirements are met pursuant to section 13, the Secretary, or the Secretary's designee, shall brief the appropriate committees of Congress on the information described under subsection (a).

(d)

Appropriate committees of Congress defined

In this section, the term appropriate committees of Congress means—

(1)

the Committee on Foreign Relations and the Select Committee on Intelligence of the Senate; and

(2)

the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives.

12.

Report on the use of disinformation related to the conflict

(a)

Report on the use of online disinformation in the civil conflict

Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 180 days thereafter, the Secretary of State shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that—

(1)

describes the use of online disinformation by parties to the conflict to perpetuate the conflict;

(2)

describes how funding from state and non-state actors supports use by parties to the conflict of disinformation, in order to further the civil conflict; and

(3)

details any efforts to disrupt the spread of online disinformation related to the civil conflict, including efforts by online and social media providers.

(b)

Form

The report required under subsection (a) shall be submitted in unclassified form and made publicly available, but may contain a classified annex.

13.

Termination of requirements

Reporting requirements under sections 5(c), 10, and 11, the authorities under section 7, the suspension of security assistance under section 8(a), and the restriction under section 9(a)(1) shall not apply on or after the date that is 30 days after the Secretary determines and certifies to the appropriate congressional committees that the Government of Ethiopia and its proxies have—

(1)

ceased all offensive military operations in the civil conflict;

(2)

taken steps toward a genuine negotiated settlement with the major parties to the conflict;

(3)

implemented measures to ensure adherence to international humanitarian law and international human rights law;

(4)

allowed unfettered access for humanitarian relief on a reliable and established basis; and

(5)

cooperated with independent investigations of credible allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other atrocities carried out in the civil conflict.

April 6, 2022

Reported with an amendment