Washington, D.C. – Today, the House Foreign Affairs Committee, chaired by Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), passed as amended the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2017 (H.R. 1677).  Introduced by Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY), the bill seeks to help stop the wholesale slaughter of the Syrian people and hold Syrian human rights abusers accountable for their crimes. 

Prior to the passage of the bill, Chairman Royce said:  “For six long years, we have watched the regime of Bashar al-Assad wage a relentless war against the people of Syria – from the deliberate and frequent bombing of schools and hospitals, to its widespread use of torture and starvation as weapons of war.   And of course there is Assad’s repeated use of chemical weapons.  Just last month, we saw footage of entire families murdered by sarin gas.  Assad’s brutality – and support from Russia, Iran and Hezbollah – has fueled a mass migration crisis and regional instability that threatens our national security. 

This bill is a step toward regaining leverage and imposing accountability for Assad’s flagrant violations of international norms and human decency.  I want to thank Ranking Member Engel for his leadership in response to the Syria conflict and on this important legislation.”

Additionally, the Committee passed the following anti-human trafficking measures:

  • H. R. 1625, Targeted Rewards for the Global Eradication of Human Trafficking Act, introduced by Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), allows the U.S. Department of State to use cash rewards to help bring human traffickers to justice; and
  • as amended, H. R. 2200, Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victims Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act of 2017, introduced by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), reauthorizes the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. 

A summary of the Committee action, including adopted amendments, will be available HERE.