Look Ahead — Week of June 16 - 20

Jun 13, 2014

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, announced the following upcoming Committee events:
 
Wednesday, June 18
 
Hearing: Protecting Christian Heritage in Turkey
 
Markup: H.R. 4347, the Turkey Christian Churches Accountability Act
 
10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 18 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Committee on Foreign Affairs
 
Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman
 
Invited Witnesses Include:
 
Elizabeth H. Prodromou, Ph.D.
Visiting Associate Professor of Conflict Resolution
The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
Tufts University
 
Mr. Khatchig Mouradian
Coordinator of Armenian Genocide Program
Center for Genocide and Human Rights
Rutgers University
 
The Honorable B. Theodore Bozonelis
Regional Commander and Chairman of the Patriarchal Properties Committee
Order of Saint Andrew the Apostle
Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate
 
Chairman Royce on the hearing: “Ancient Christian properties in Turkey have been under siege for decades.  Hundreds of treasured historic places of worship have been lost through neglect, vandalism, or deliberate conversions into casinos, warehouses, museums or mosques.  Despite a brief season of optimism in 2011 when the Turkish government seemed committed to reforming these troubling policies, very little has changed.  At this hearing, the Committee will examine the current state of Turkey’s historic and religious sites and the Turkish Government’s progress, or lack thereof, in correcting this disturbing violation of religious freedom.”
 
Immediately following the hearing, the Committee will consider H.R. 4347, the Turkey Christian Churches Accountability Act.
 
Wednesday, June 18
 
Subcommittee Markup: H.R. 4653, United States Commission on International Religious Freedom Reauthorization Act of 2014
 
1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 18 in 2200 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations
 
Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Chairman
 
Wednesday, June 18
 
Subcommittee Briefing and Hearing: Human Rights Abuses and Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea
 
2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 18 in 2200 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations
 
Invited Briefers Include:
 
The Honorable Lee Jong-hoon
Ambassador-at-Large for Human Rights
Republic of Korea
 
Invited Witnesses Include:
 
The Honorable Andrew Natsios
Co-Chair
The Committee for Human Rights in North Korea
 
Shin Chang-Hoon, Ph.D
Director
Center for Global Governance
Asan Institute for Policy Studies
 
Mr. Shin Dong-hyuk
Survivor of North Korean prison camp
 
Chairman Smith on the hearing: “The North Korean government’s abuse of its people over the course many years has cemented it as one of the world’s foremost human rights violators.  The UN-backed Commission of Inquiry that carefully examined North Korea’s record found what everyone expected: horrific cruelty and oppression on a massive scale continue inside the country. The witnesses at this week’s hearing will share stories of the brutality of the regime, detail the internationalresponses, and offer suggestions about how we can help alleviate the misery of the North Korean people.”
 
Wednesday, June 18
 
Joint Subcommittee Hearing: The Bergdahl Exchange: Implications for U.S. National Security and the Fight Against Terrorism
 
(Media RSVP requirement by 5pm on Tuesday, June 17. Details HERE.)
 
2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 18 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade
 
Ted Poe (R-TX), Chairman
 
Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa
 
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman
 
Invited Witnesses Include:
 
Mr. Mike Waltz
Senior National Security Fellow
New America Foundation
(Commanded a Special Forces’ Company in Eastern Afghanistan in 2009)
                                    
Spc. Cody Full, USA, Retired
(Served with Sgt. Bergdahl in Blackfoot Company, Second Platoon)
                                    
Mr. Andy Andrews
Father of deceased Second Lieutenant, USA, Darryn Andrews
 
Chairman Poe on the hearing: “This hearing comes at a critical time. A lot has been said about the Sgt. Bergdahl-Taliban deal, about the President’s circumvention of law, about how bad these Taliban detainees are, about Qatar’s willingness or ability to restrict their activities, and the like. We are holding this hearing to get the ground truth from those who were in Afghanistan when it happened, those whosuffered losses from this ordeal and to try and understand what the consequences of this deal will be.”
 
Chairman Ros-Lehtinen on the hearing: “I was briefed by Administration officials about a potential swap for Guantanamo detainees in2011, was against it then, and I’m still against it now. In this Taliban swap, the Administration showed once again its willingness to get around Congress, even on major decisions affecting our troops serving overseas, and has a lot to answer for. The five members of the Taliban that the Administration released are extremely dangerous and their release can harm our national security interests in the region. This hearing will help us understand what the implications of this decision may be, both for our troops in Afghanistan and for our ongoing fight against terrorism.”
 
 
Thursday, June 19
 
Subcommittee Markup: H. Res. 109 and H. Res. 435
 
9:45 a.m. on Thursday, June 19 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa
 
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman
 
Thursday, June 19
 
Joint Subcommittee Hearing: One Year Under Rouhani: Iran's Abysmal Human Rights Record
 
10:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 19 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa
 
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman
 
Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations
 
Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Chairman
 
Invited Witnesses Include:
 
Robert P. George, Ph.D.
Chairman
U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom
 
Ms. Cler Baheri
Member of the Baha’i Community
 
Mr. Hossein Alizadeh
Regional Program Coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa
International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission
 
Chairman Ros-Lehtinen on the hearing: “With much attention given to Iran’s nuclear ambitions and global terrorist activities, it is important to examine Iran’s abysmal human rights record. Nearly one year since Rouhani’s selection, this so-called moderate leader has not only continued the regime’s oppressive methods, but under his rule, the human rights situation has onlygotten worse. There have been hundreds of executions under Rouhani and reports indicate that there have already been over 250 executions in Iran in the first four months of 2014 alone. Religious minorities, particularly Christians and Baha’i, continue to face systematic discrimination and repression, while other minorities face increased harassment and intimidation. With American citizens still in captivity, it is important to continue to highlight the real face of the Iranian regime, and to shine a light on the Administration’s misplaced priorities in its foreign policy towards Iran.”
 
Chairman Smith on the hearing: “Even as Iran prepared to request the world’s trust with nuclear capabilities in the next round of P5+1 talks last month, the Iranian police burst into the hospital room of American citizen Pastor Saeed Abedini, savagely beat him until he collapsed in front of his family, and took him back to prison.  Today Pastor Abedin is serving an eight-year sentence for practicingChristianity.  Iran’s continued and savage disregard for the most basic of human rights disqualifies it from regional, much less world, leadership.”
 
Thursday, June 19
 
Subcommittee Hearing: Thailand: A Democracy in Peril
 
12:00pm on Thursday, June 19 in 2167 Rayburn House Office Building
 
Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific
 
Steve Chabot (R-OH), Chairman
 
Invited Witnesses Include:
 
The Honorable Scot Marciel
Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
U.S. Department of State
 
Amy Searight, Ph.D.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs
U.S. Department of Defense
 
Chairman Chabot on the hearing: “Thailand has long been considered an outpost of democracy and liberal ideals in Southeast Asia; however, this reputation is all being called into question after the Royal Thai Army seized control of power and suspended Thailand’s constitution on May 22. The military’s actions since that time—imposing curfews, blocking international media, banning public gatherings, detaining journalists, and arresting political leaders—is undemocratic and unjustified. While Thailand has been a significant security partner and ally of the U.S. for decades, this coup d’état is already having a negative impact on the bilateral relationship. This hearing is being called at a critical time in order to examine the short and long-term implications of this coup on the U.S.-Thailand alliance, and to assess whether the Administration is doing enough to encourage the restoration of a civilian government and Thailand’s respect for the fundamental freedoms that true democracies represent.”
 
***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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