*Witness added to 11/4 hearing on 2015 Trafficking in Persons Report*

**Time changed for 11/5 markup**

***Witnesses added to 11/6 field hearing***

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, November 4

Subcommittee Hearing: Demanding Accountability: Evaluating the 2015 “Trafficking in Persons Report”

1 p.m. on Wednesday, November 4 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations
Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-NJ), Chairman

Invited Witnesses Include:

Panel I
Kari Johnstone, Ph.D.
Principal Deputy Director

Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
U.S. Department of State

Mr. James Carouso
Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
U.S. Department of State

Mr. Alex Lee
Deputy Assistant Secretary
Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs
U.S. Department of State

Panel II
The Honorable Mark Lagon
Freedom House
(Former Ambassador-at-Large for Trafficking in Persons, U.S. Department of State)

Chairman Smith on the hearing: “This hearing focuses on the muted pluses and glaring minuses of the State Department’s 2015 Trafficking in Person’s report.  The law I authored, The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, requires an annual State Department report that holds countries publically accountable on their progress—or lack thereof—in the fight against human trafficking. The report, and the threat of sanctions for the worst offenders, has galvanized change throughout the world, leading countries to prosecute traffickers, protect victims, and prevent human trafficking.  The report’s power, however, lies in its accuracy. Consequently, I am very concerned that political calculations have hobbled the 2015 Trafficking in Persons report, particularly in the cases of Malaysia, China, and Cuba.” 

Wednesday, November 4

Subcommittee Hearing: Challenge to Europe: The Growing Refugee Crisis

2 p.m. on Wednesday, November 4 in 2200 Rayburn House Office Building

Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA), Chairman

Invited Witnesses Include:

Gary Shiffman, Ph.D.
Adjunct Professor
Center for Security Studies
Georgetown University

V. Bradley Lewis, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
School of Philosophy
The Catholic University of America

Chairman Rohrabacher on the hearing:Thousands of migrants, refugees, and displaced persons from Africa, the Middle East, and Asia are entering Europe everyday across uncontrolled borders. This hearing will give Members the opportunity to learn about this crisis and how this out-of-control migration is changing European society.  A change that could well be historic and permanent."


**Thursday, November 5

Markup: H.R. 2241, H.R. 2845, H.R. 3750, and H.R. 3766

10 a.m. on Thursday, November 5 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building

Committee on Foreign Affairs
Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman

Bills to be marked up include:

H.R. 2241, Global Health Innovation Act of 2015

H.R. 2845, African Growth and Opportunity Act Enhancement Act of 2015

H.R. 3750, First Responders Passport Act of 2015

H.R. 3766, Foreign Aid Transparency and Accountability Act of 2015


***Friday, November 6

Subcommittee Field Hearing: Deplorable Human Rights Violations in Cuba and Venezuela

10 a.m. on Friday, November 6 at the Stephen P. Clark Government Center (111 NW First Street, Miami, FL 33128)

Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere
Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Chairman

Invited Witnesses Include:

Panel I
Mr. Antonio Rodiles
Cuban Dissident

Ms. Sylvia Iriondo
Mothers and Women Against Repression (M.A.R. por Cuba)

The Reverend Mario Felix Lleonart Barroso
Ebenezer Baptist Church in Villa Clara, Cuba

Panel II
Ms. Adriana López Vermut
Sister of Leopoldo López

Ms. Ibeyise Pacheco
Venezuelan Journalist and Writer

Mr. Carlos Vecchio Demari
National Political Coordinator
Voluntad Popular

Chairman Duncan on the hearing: “In both Cuba and Venezuela, repressive governments brutally restrict freedom of expression, association, press, and religion. The Castro and Maduro regimes deny basic human rights to those whom they see as a threat to their control. While the world has stood watching, these governments have continued their acts of violence against their people with impunity. Using threats, imprisonment, beatings, and torture, these governments have sought to censure and silence freedom, dissent, and any form of opposition using the sham trappings of democracy, rule of law, and independence. This hearing will provide a rare opportunity to hear from very courageous individuals who have been personally impacted by these governments’ repression. It is my hope that this hearing will provide direction for the United States as we consider our policies towards these countries.”


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

***All Committee proceedings are webcast live HERE.