War Crimes Rewards Expansion Act
Mr. Speaker, sadly, we live in a world where crimes against humanity still occur. We have seen two declared genocides in just the last 20 years--in Darfur in 2004, and by ISIS in 2016.
We have seen the horrific ethnic cleanings against the Rohingya in Burma. We have seen the atrocities committed by Assad against his own people in Syria. But bringing the criminals behind these massacres to justice can be difficult. That is why 35 years ago, we enacted the State Department's Rewards program. It authorizes the Secretary of State to offer rewards for the arrest or conviction of some of the most dangerous people in the world.
Originally written to be used against international terrorists, the successful program has since been expanded to include drug traffickers, war criminals, and perpetrators of genocide. As the world changes and as the international criminals evolve, we need to make sure this important program evolves with them. And that is why I urge my colleagues to join us in supporting the War Crimes Rewards Expansion Act.
Mr. Speaker, the bill makes clear that these rewards are not just meant to support international tribunals. They can also be used to bring these dangerous criminals to justice here in the United States, under United States law.
Mr. Speaker, I thank the author of this bill, the gentlewoman from North Carolina (Ms. Foxx), and my good friend, Chairman Engel, for considering this bill today, which deserves our support.
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