Washington, D.C. – Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-CA) released the following statement today after House passage of two bipartisan measures, H. Con. Res. 75 and H. Con. Res. 121, addressing genocide and war crimes in the Middle East:

“ISIS is guilty of genocide.  It has been using mass murder, beheadings, crucifixions, rape, torture, and enslavement in its deliberate campaign to eliminate religious minorities and bulldoze their history.  With this declaration today, the House has taken a very serious step.  There is no reason for the administration to drag out its own genocide determination any longer. 

“Just as important, the Obama administration must seek accountability for Bashar al-Assad’s heinous war crimes against his own people.  More than 18,500 children are among the hundreds of thousands who’ve been killed by the chemical weapons, barrel bombs and firing squads unleashed by the Assad regime and its backers.  An international tribunal, like those established following the conflicts in Yugoslavia and Rwanda, is critical to ensuring peace and justice.”

NOTE: House passage of the two measures, which the House Foreign Affairs Committee unanimously passed earlier this month, comes before a March 17 statutory deadline for the Obama administration to provide Congress with an evaluation of a genocide determination.