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The committee has received the administration's views from the Department of State supporting the resolution, with some proposed changes which we will get to.1

I would now like to recognize the chairman of the subcommittee for his comments on the resolution.

Mr. YATRON. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman.

I support House Joint Resolution 605, legislation regarding U.S. policy in opposition to the practice of torture by any foreign government.

Millions of individuals throughout the world experience acts of cruelty too brutal to imagine. They are victimized by their governments, the very institutions which should protect them. In addition to the inhumanities these people have to endure, they must endure yet another obstacle-the unwillingness on the part of well-meaning people outside of their government to look at or listen to their story. Proof of torture is too difficult for many to face, but face it we must.

The Subcommittee on Human Rights and International Organizations, which I chair, held a series of hearings on the phenomenon of torture. Thanks to the efforts of Amnesty International and various other human rights organizations, we were able to look closely at this heinous crime, to see how it affects human life, and to plan scientific actions to combat this cruelty.

Torture is a brutal and powerful enemy. We can combat and ultimately defeat this horrifying practice by supporting positive measures such as House Joint Resolution 605. Our fight to eradicate this universal tragedy-torture-must be a continual and determined one. We, in the United States, have been spared the endless agony torture victims throughout the world are realizing, but we have not been spared the responsibility of fighting against this injustice.

I would like to commend Mr. Fascell, the distinguished chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, for introducing this very worthwhile legislation.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Chairman FASCELL. At this point, ranking minority member, Mr. Leach if he were here, would like to make some comments. If he gets here, we will let him do that.

But, pending that, without objection, we will include his statement in support of this legislation in the record.

Now, if the deputy chief of staff will read the resolution.
Mr. FINLEY [reading]:

House Joint Resolution 605, regarding the implementation of the policy of the United States Government in opposition to the practice of torture by any foreign government.

Chairman FASCELL. Without objection, further reading of the resolution will be dispensed with and considered as read, printed in the record, and open for amendment at any point.

[H.J. Res. 605 follows:]

1 See appendix 2.


H. J. RES. 605

Regarding the implementation of the policy of the United States Government in opposition to the practice of torture by any foreign government.


JUNE 26, 1984

Mr. FASCELL (for himself, Mr. HAMILTON, Mr. YATRON, Mr. SOLARZ, Mr. BONKER, Mr. STUDDS, Mr. IRELAND, Mr. MICA, Mr. BARNES, Mr. WOLPE, Mr. CROCKETT, Mr. GEJDENSON, Mr. DYMALLY, Mr. LANTOS, Mr. KostMAYER, Mr. TORRICELLI, Mr. SMITH of Florida, Mr. BERMAN, Mr. REID, Mr. FEIGHAN, Mr. WEISS, Mr. ACKERMAN, Mr. GARCIA, Mr. BROOMFIELD, Mr. WINN, Mr. GILMAN, Mr. LAGOMARSINO, Mr. PRITCHARD, Mr. LEACH of Iowa, Mr. ROTH, Mr. HYDE, Mr. SOLOMON, Mr. BEREUTER, Mr. SILJANDER, Mr. ZSCHAU, Mr. PATTERSON, Mr. MARKEY, Mr. WIRTH, Mr. LELAND, Mr. HARKIN, Mr. MACKAY, Mrs. SCHROEDER, Mr. MILLER of California, Ms. OAKAR, Mr. PANETTA, and Mr. PORTER) introduced the following joint resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs


Regarding the implementation of the policy of the United States Government in opposition to the practice of torture by any foreign government.

Whereas internationally recognized nongovernmental human rights organizations and international human rights organizations have investigated and reported in detail on the systematic use of torture in more than sixty countries;

Whereas the Department of State has also reported in its annual country reports on human rights practices that this gross

violation of internationally recognized human rights is occurring;

Whereas torture knows no ideological boundaries and is practiced in countries in every region of the world;

Whereas torture is absolutely prohibited by international legal standards;

Whereas in those countries where torture is practiced systematically, it is possible to identify laws, institutions, and other forms of political organization that contribute to the practice and allow its continuation;

Whereas legal, medical, religious, and other groups seeking to combat torture emphasize that access to detainees, the civil and criminal prosecution of torturers, and the rehabilitation of victims of torture are critical steps in reducing the practice and effects of torture;

Whereas the United States Government has supported the work of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in developing the draft Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment which is intended to reduce the practice of torture and lead to its eventual abolition, and the United States Government is supportive of the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture; and

Whereas the good will of the peoples of the world toward the United States can be increased when the United States distances itself from the practice of torture by governments friendly to the United States: Now, therefore, be it


Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives

2 of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

3 That the Congress reaffirms that it is the continuing policy of

1 the United States Government to oppose the practice of tor2 ture by foreign governments through public and private diplo3 macy and, when necessary and appropriate, through the 4 enactment and vigorous implementation of laws intended to 5 reinforce United States policies with respect to torture. The 6 United States Government opposes acts of torture wherever 7 they occur, without regard to ideological or regional consid8 erations, and will make every effort to work cooperatively 9 with other governments and with nongovernmental organiza


10 tions to combat the practice of torture worldwide.


SEC. 2. (a) The President is requested

(1) to instruct the Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations to continue to raise the issue of torture practiced by governments; and








(2) to continue to involve the United States Government in the formulation of international standards

and effective implementing mechanisms, particularly

19 the draft Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel,


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Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

(b) In order to implement the policy expressed in the 22 first section of this resolution, the Secretary of State is re

23 quested to issue formal instructions to each United States



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24 chief of mission regarding United States policy with respect 25 to torture, including—

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(1) instructions

(A) to examine allegations of the practice of torture, particularly allegations concerning the existence of secret detention, extended incommuni

cado detention, and restrictions on access by family members, lawyers, and independent medical personnel to detainees; and

(B) to forward such information as may be gathered, including information regarding any efforts made by the host government to reduce and eliminate the practice of torture, to the Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs for analysis in preparing the Department's annual country reports on human rights practices;

(2) in the case of a chief of mission assigned to a country where torture is regularly practiced, instructions to report on a periodic basis as circumstances require to the Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs regarding efforts made by the respective United States diplomatic mission to implement United States policy with respect to combating torture;

(3) instructions to meet with indigenous human rights monitoring groups knowledgeable about the

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