Senate Adopts Bill Targeting
AIPAC applauds the U.S. Senate for adopting the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2017 (S. 1595), which seeks to cut off the flow of resources to the terrorist group. This bipartisan legislation was introduced by Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH).
This measure is particularly important in light of Hizballah’s destabilizing regional actions and its massive arms build-up in Lebanon. The legislation strengthens and expands the scope of economic and financial sanctions imposed by previous legislation: the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015. It targets foreign governments that knowingly provide significant financial support to Hizballah and foreign individuals and companies that aid its fundraising or recruitment activities.
- Imposes sanctions on foreign individuals and companies that aid Hizballah’s fundraising or recruitment activities, including the provision of support to its media outlets;
- Requires an annual report on banks that provide assistance to Hizballah and are tied to countries deemed State Sponsors of Terrorism, which must contain a determination on whether such banks are in violation of U.S. law banning material support to terrorist entities;
- Imposes sanctions on foreign government agencies or linked organizations that knowingly provide significant financial or material support to Hizballah;
- Imposes sanctions on Hizballah by reason of its significant transnational criminal activities, including narcotics trafficking;
- Mandates an annual report on jurisdictions outside Lebanon that allow their territory to be used by Hizballah for terrorist activity, including training, financing and recruitment; and
- Mandates a report on estimated net worth of senior Hizballah members, including any senior foreign political figures of the terrorist group.
Companion legislation—H.R. 3329 introduced by Reps. Ed Royce (R-CA) and Eliot Engel (D-NY)—was adopted last week by the House Foreign Affairs Committee. The panel also passed the Sanctioning Hizballah’s Illicit Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act (H.R. 3342), introduced by Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Tom Suozzi (D-NY), which requires the president to impose sanctions on foreign persons responsible for the use of civilians as human shields.
AIPAC urges the full U.S. House of Representatives to quickly act on this important legislation.