A Look Ahead — Week of June 24-28

Jun 21, 2013

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, announced the following upcoming Committee events:

Tuesday, June 25

Joint Subcommittee Hearing: Religious Minorities in Syria: Caught in the Middle

3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 25 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations

Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Chairman

Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman

Invited witnesses include:

Panel I

Mr. Thomas O. Melia  
Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
U.S. Department of State

Panel II
Rev. Majed El Shafie
Founder
One Free World International

John Eibner, Ph.D.
Chief Executive Officer
Christian Solidarity International, USA

Ms. Nina Shea
Director
Center for Religious Freedom
Hudson Institute

Chairman Smith on the hearing:  "Amid reports of atrocity and death in Syria, we see an alarming pattern of religiously-motivated violence againstminority religious groups, such as Christians, Jews, Yezidis, and Druze. Viewed with suspicion by both sides of the civil war, these groups are caught in the middle.  Some NGOs even warn that conditions have aligned for genocide. This hearing will examine how U.S. policy and assistance can try to prevent religiously-motivated atrocities and promote protection of religious minorities during and after the civil war."

Chairman Ros-Lehtinen on the hearing: “The ongoingviolent crisis in Syria continues to have crippling effects on the Syrian people and throughout the region. Nearly 100,000 people have been killed since the fighting began, with thousands of refugees fleeing from the violence every day to potentially destabilize our allies in the region such as Jordan, which could impact the democratic Jewish state of Israel. Gross human rights violations are being committed by Sunni extremists linked to al-Qaeda as well as Assad's forces with the assistance of Iran’s IRGC and Hezbollah fighters. According to reports, religious minorities have become victims of religiously-motivated atrocities by factions within Syria. As we have learned from Egypt and Iraq, many Christians fled for fear of losing their lives and now religious minorities in Syria are faced with the same existential threat. This hearing will examine how the United States can come up with a comprehensive strategy to promote religious freedom and protect Syria’s religious minorities.”

 

Wednesday, June 26

Hearing: Broadcasting Board of Governors: An Agency “Defunct” 

10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 26 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Committee on Foreign Affairs

Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman

Invited witnesses include:

The Honorable James K. Glassman
Founding Executive Director
George W. Bush Institute
(Former Chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, and Former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs)

The Honorable S. Enders Wimbush
Executive Director for Strategy & Development
National Bureau of Asian Research
(Former Governor of the Broadcasting Board of Governors)

The Honorable D. Jeff Hirschberg
Chairman
The Northeast Maglev, LLC
(Former Governor of the Broadcasting Board of Governors)

Chairman Royce on the hearing:  “International broadcasting is a key tool of U.S. diplomacy.  Unfortunately, it’s broken.   As Secretary Clinton rightly pointed out earlier this year, ‘the BBG is practically defunct in terms of its capacity to be able to tell a message around the world.’  It is time to take a hard look at the BBG and ask if our resources, nearly $750 million annually, are being spent wisely – are we getting what we need from these broadcasting efforts?  We aren’t, and it is time for broad  reforms;  ‘tinkering’ and ‘band-aid’ solutions are not an option, because the stakes are too great.” 

 

Wednesday, June 26

Subcommittee Hearing: Turkey at a Crossroads: What do the Gezi Park Protests Mean for Democracy in the Region?

2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 26 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Chairman

Invited witnesses include:

Hillel Fradkin, Ph.D.
Director
Center on Islam, Democracy and the Future of the Muslim World
Hudson Institute

Soner Cagaptay, Ph.D.
Director
Turkish Research Program
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy

Mr. Kadri Gursel
Contributing Writer to Al-Monitor

The Honorable James F. Jeffrey
Philip Solondz Distinguished Visiting Fellow
The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
(Former American Ambassador to Turkey)

Chairman Rohrabacher on the hearing: "Turkey is a NATO ally whose strategic geography is as important as ever. Over the past decade, however, the orientation of Turkish foreign policy under Prime Minister Erdogen has been troubling. Its shift in alignment away from Israel and towards Iran increased tensions in the region. The Syrian Civil War has caused Endogen to move back towards the West in the face of the menacing Iranian-Hezbollah intervention.  But mass protests have shaken the Erdogan administration which has resorted to a harsh crackdown on dissent. Worse, Erdogan loyalists have resorted to wild conspiracy theories blaming “the Jewish lobby” and the American Enterprise Institute for plotting the demonstrations. The Prime Minister himself has referred to the “interest rates lobby”, an anti-Semitic slur for Jews. Such tactics call into question the character of Erdogan and his ruling party. Our hearing will look at whether Turkey can meet the challenges that face it at home and abroad; and what are the potential impacts on U.S.interests and values."

 

Wednesday, June 26

Subcommittee Markup: H.R. 1409, Export Promotion Reform Act; and H.R. 1926, State Trade Coordination Act

2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 26 in 2200 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade

 

Thursday, June 27 

Markup: H.R. 1897, Vietnam Human Rights Act of 2013; and H. Res. 131, Concerning the ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the need for international efforts toward long-term peace, stability, and observance of human rights

10:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 27 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Committee on Foreign Affairs

Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman

 

Thursday, June 27

Subcommittee Hearing: Addressing the Neglected Diseases Treatment Gap

2:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 27 in 2200 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations

Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Chairman

Invited witnesses include:

Panel I

Lee Hall, M.D., Ph.D.
Chief
Parasitology and International Programs Branch
Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
National Institutes of Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Jesse Goodman, M.D.
Chief Scientist
Food and Drug Administration
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Panel II

The Honorable Michael Marine
Chief Executive Officer
Sabin Vaccine Institute

Jay Siegel, M.D.
Chief Biotechnology Officer, and
Head of Scientific Strategy and Policy
Johnson & Johnson

Chairman Smith on the hearing:  “A number of so-called ‘neglected diseases’ receive little attention from researchers in such critical areas as detection, strategies, vaccines or drug therapies.  These diseases, mostly tropical, affect relatively few people who are largely in developing countries. This hearing will examine U.S. government efforts to create incentives for drug companies to research these diseases.  The subcommittee also will seek recommendations as to how the U.S. should refine our strategy to more effectively help relieve the victims of their suffering.”

 

Thursday, June 27

Joint Subcommittee Hearing: Next Steps in the U.S. - Republic of Korea Alliance

2:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 27 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific

Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH), Chairman

Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade

Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX), Chairman

Invited witnesses include:

Mr. Joseph Y. Yun
Acting Assistant Secretary
Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
U.S. Department of State

The Honorable Thomas M. Countryman
Assistant Secretary
International Security and Nonproliferation
U.S. Department of State

Chairman Chabot on the hearing:  "The U.S.-South Korea Alliance is the cornerstone of peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region.  This year, as we celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the Alliance, we are reminded of the shared sacrifice that both of our nations endured during the dark days of the Korean War.  As we look forward to the next 60-years, it is critical that the Administration and the Congress do its utmost to support a strong, relevant, and forward-looking U.S.-South Korea Relationship.  The purpose of this hearing is to examine the issues that President Park Geun-hye identified as priorities during bilateral summit with President Obama last month."

 

 

***See www.foreignaffairs.house.gov for updates. 

***Coverage note:  All Foreign Affairs Committee proceedings are webcast live at www.foreignaffairs.house.gov/live-video-feed.

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