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U.S. Senators Introduce Bipartisan Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act of 2016

24 Feb 2016 16:14

U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) introduced the Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act of 2016. Co-sponsored by 13 other Senators, this bipartisan legislation ensures that the U.S. government works in a coordinated manner using its full range of tools, including diplomatic, political, financial, and intelligence capabilities, to provide early warnings about at-risk communities and states in order to help prevent mass atrocities against civilians.

This legislation strengthens atrocity prevention efforts by seeking to:

  • Authorize the establishment of a transparent, accountable, high-level Atrocity Prevention Board to advance an interagency effort to prevent mass atrocities and ensure a coordinated and effective response to emerging and ongoing atrocities;
  • Authorize the Complex Crises Fund, overseen by the Administrator of USAID, to support emergency efforts to prevent or respond to emerging or unforeseen foreign complex crises overseas, including potential mass atrocities and conflict; 
  • Mandate training for Department of State and USAID Foreign Service Officers at high risk posts to recognize patterns of escalation and early warning signs of potential atrocities or violence and
  • Encourage the Director of National Intelligence to include in his/her annual testimony to Congress on threats to US national security a review of countries or regions at risk of mass atrocities or genocide

More information can be found here, with the full text of the Genocide and Atrocity Prevention Act.