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>Funding Programs 
>Mr. Chairman, in addition to designing and implementing mechanisms to 
>coordinate U.S. democracy and human rights policy within the Department, 
>between agencies, and among our allies, my bureau also is responsible 
>for oversight of specific programs designed to promote democracy and, 
>when necessary, to respond rapidly to democratization and human rights 
>crises. These efforts often evolve from recommendations by policy 
>mechanisms such as the Human Rights and Democracy Core Group. Many are 
>in countries where USAlD does not have a resident mission and where 
>specific, targeted assistance can have an immediate human rights impact. 
>Others are directed at human rights crisis situations where my bureau 
>can act quickly and flexibly. USAID and the State Department regional
> bureaus are integral parts of the process by which these high-impact 
>democracy and human rights programs are allocated. 
>My bureau, together with the Department of State regional bureaus and 
>USAID, exercises oversight over that portion of Economic Support Funds 
>(ESF) devoted to building democracy and promoting human rights. Funds 
>are administered in one of three ways; 1) through the management of the 
>new Human Rights and Democracy Fund; 2) through the co~-management with 
>the regional bureaus of Regional Democracy Funds; and 3) through the 
>administration of specific projects within these regional funds. 
>Established in FY 1998, the Human Rights and Democracy Fund (HRDF) is in 
>many ways the programmatic complement to the Core Group's policy focus. 
>As a funding instrument, the HRDF enables the U.S. to respond to human 
>rights or democratization crises, and is used primarily when no other 
>appropriate sources are available. By responding rapidly and decisively 
>to emergencies as they develop, the fund enables the United States to 
>minimize human rights abuses. For example, deploying teams of human 
>rights monitors into an area where abuses are occurring can help deter 
>further atrocities and gather reliable information upon which to base 
>further action. 
>Funding is considered on a case-by-case basis. I review program 
>proposals put forth by an intra-bureau program committee and consult 
>with other relevant bureaus and agencies. Congress is notified of 
>allocation decisions in those cases when specific programs have not been 
>included in the Congressional Presentation Document. 
>In FY 1998, the Administration requested $8 million for the Human Rights 
>and Democracy Fund. In FY 1999, we have requested $9 million. 
>In addition to the HRDF, my bureau oversees the administration of a 
>series of Regional Democracy Funds that provide elections~-related 
>assistance; encourage criminal justice reform and judicial training; 
>support the establishment of truth commissions and other national 
>reconciliation efforts; and promote the development of civil society, 
>especially independent media institutions, the growth of human rights 
>organizations, and women's political participation. Whereas the Human 
>Rights and Democracy Fund focuses primarily on countries emerging from 
>catastrophe or conflict, the Regional Democracy Funds tend to focus more 
>on countries in transition to democracy. Another important difference is 
>that the Regional Democracy Funds are designed to respond flexibly to 
>ongoing policy developments, while the Human Rights and Democracy Fund 
>addresses immediate or emerging issues. The Regional Democracy Funds 
>thus are able to provide more intensive and in-depth non-emergency 
>technical assistance, whereas the Human Rights and Democracy fund is 
>better suited to respond to crises in regions where Regional Funds may 
>be limited. 
>An interagency group, chaired by my bureau, and including the regional 
>bureaus and the USAID Democracy Center, manages regional democracy finds 
>in the Middle East, Africa, East Asia and the Pacific, South Asia, and 
>Latin America and the Caribbean. In consultation and cooperation with 
>USAID we recommend projects based on proposals submitted by our 
>embassies, our Washington offices, or U.S. democracy-promotion NGOs. The 
>Assistant Secretaries of the regional bureaus and I then jointly make 
>final recommendations to the Under Secretary for Security Affairs. 
>Most of these projects are implemented through agreements with U.S. NGOs 
>undertaken by USAID's Center for Democracy and Governance and its field 
>missions, or through memoranda of agreement with the Department of 
>Justice for training and technical assistance In the event that no other 
>U.S. agency is able or willing to carry out a particular agreement, my 
>bureau's Program Office has the ability to work directly with U.S. NGOs~ 
>Our partners in the regional finds currently include the National 
>Endowment for Democracy and its four institutes; the International 
>Foundation for Electoral Systems; Yale University; and the Asia 
>For FY 1999, we are requesting a total of $39.75 million for the 
>Regional Democracy Funds: $4 million for the Middle East, $15 million 
>for Africa, $5 million for East Asia and the Pacific, $2.75 million for 
>South Asia, and $13 million for Latin America and the Caribbean. 
>Translating Policy and Programs into targeted Assistance 
>Mr. Chairman, I now would like to offer some examples of how we have 
>translated these policy and funding mechanisms into assistance to those 
>countries emerging from catastrophe and conflict as well as to those in 
>transition from authoritarian rule. These stares often require our help 
>to facilitate or consolidate fragile democratic processes, sometimes on 
>an emergency basis. 
>In Bosnia, the Democracy Core Group has recommended finding three 
>efforts critical to the Dayton peace process. The United States 
>coordinates support for the peace process with our European partners. 
>For example, we have developed a strategy, supported by the European 
>Union, that was announced at last fall's US-EU summit and has tightened 
>economic assistance conditionality and linked it to the turnover of 
>indicted war criminals. 
>Through the Human Rights and Democracy Fund, the United States provides 
>assistance to the Annex Six Human Rights Commission, the human tights 
>arm of the Dayton peace process ($1.25 million in FY 1998). Our aid has 
>permitted an internationally-appointed Human Rights Ombudsperson to 
>investigate cases of human rights violations, and a Human Rights 
>Chamber, composed of eight international and six Bosnian judges, to 
>adjudicate the cases and offer legally-binding judgments. 
>Through the Human Rights and Democracy Fund, the United States also 
>supports the International Commission on Missing Persons, a major U.S. 
>initiative to support the peace and reconciliation process in the former 
>Yugoslavia ($2 million in FY 1998). Currently chaired by Senator Bob 
>Dole, the Commission applies political pressure to the regional parties 
>in the former Yugoslavia to expedite resolution of missing persons 
>cases; provides assistance to families of the missing; and supports the 
>exhumation process and identification of remains where possible. 
>Finally, the Human Rights and Democracy Fund supports the International 
>Criminal tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia ($1.27 million in FY 1998). 
>Established in 1993, the tribunal is mandated by the ~UN Security 
>Council to investigate and prosecute persons who committed war crimes, 
>crimes against humanity, genocide, and other serious violations of 
>international humanitarian law in the former Yugoslavia. The Dayton 
>Agreement binds the parties to cooperate with the tribunal and transfer 
>Funds ($275,000) have permitted the U.S. to deploy to the Hague a team 
>of international attorneys and translators to review on an urgent basis 
>the backlog of dossiers of alleged war criminals provided by the 
>Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian governments, helping the tribunal decide 
>whether any should be prosecuted internationally. We also provide 
>support ($400,000) that furnishes translation assistance and have funded 
>($1 million) the construction of a second courtroom so that the tribunal 
>can handle simultaneous trials of the many new indictees who have been 
>brought into custody over the last year. 
>Working through the Human Rights and Democracy Core Group, my bureau has 
>helped coordinate the Administration's commitment to bring to an end the 
>genocide, civil conflicts, and human rights abuses in the Great Lakes 
>region of Africa. During her 1997 trip to Africa, the Secretary 
>announced a $30 million ($23 million in ESF) Great Lakes Justice 
>Initiative, which is designed to help build institutions for the rule of 
>law, human rights, and ethnic reconciliation in order to end the reign 
>of impunity and cycle of violence in Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic 
>Republic of Congo. The importance of this Initiative was underscored by 
>the President in his speech last week in Rwanda. The United States is 
>undertaking this and other efforts in the region in coordination and
> consultation with our African partners, other donors and NGOs. 
>The Great Lakes Justice Initiative will work in partnership with 
>Africans to identify and fund projects that reform the courts, 
>prosecutors, police, and prisons; build institutional capacity; and 
>train personnel. It also will assist professional associations, 
>universities, and other components of civil society to formulate 
>improved laws and practices and support reform in governmental 
>institutions of justice. Finally, it will address the role of the 
>military by providing technical assistance to increase adherence to 
>international human rights standards in the military court system and 
>facilitating the demobilization of child soldiers. 
>U~.S. human rights and democratization funding in the region is not 
>limited to the Great Lakes Justice Initiative. Through the Africa 
>Regional Democracy Fund ($500,000 in FY 1997), the United States is 
>providing support to the office of the United Nations High Commissioner 
>for Human Rights to establish the UN investigative team in the 
>Democratic Republic of the Congo and enlarge the human rights monitoring 
>operations in Rwanda. We also are working with our partners in Europe to 
>coordinate assistance to the International War Crimes Tribunal for 
>Rwanda so that it may conduct speedier trials and establish a witness 
>protection program. 
>In coordination with the State Department regional bureaus, my bureau 
>also provides assistance to countries in transition from authoritarian 
>rule or countries moving toward broader democratic participation. In 
>Mexico, for example, the Latin America and the Caribbean Regional 
>Democracy Fund ($700,000 in FY 1997 and $1 million in FY 1998) augments 
>other U.S. Government support of NGO programs that combat pre-election 
>fraud and promote free and fair elections. Justice reform also remains 
>an important objective. The United States will sponsor an exchange 
>program that brings together senior Mexican and U.S. judges; provide 
>technical assistance to strengthen court management and reduce caseload 
>backlogs; and support NGO activities to increase protection of victims' 
>rights. The U.S. also is providing assistance to local-level officials 
>and NGOs to manage resources and stimulate local democracy under the 
>Mexican Government's plan to decentralize governance. Finally, the U.S. 
>is providing technical assistance to support reform of the Mexican 
>Congress by improving independent Congressional budget oversight and 
>legislative skills. 
>In Liberia, the Africa Regional Democracy Fund ($1 million in FY 1997) 
>facilitated the successful completion of the first competitive 
>multi-party elections since the end of the civil war. The July 1997 
>elections were considered credible and fair by both international and 
>domestic observers, and have paved the way for Liberia to establish a 
>viable, democratic system of government. 
>In Yemen, the NEA Regional Democracy Fund ($275,000 in FY 1997) 
>supported a wide-ranging technical assistance program during the 
>highly-successful April 1997 parliamentary elections. Through grants to 
>the National Democratic Institute and the International Foundation for 
>Electoral Systems, the fund helped train elections officials, provided 
>technical assistance on ballot design, and supported election-day ballot 
>The Bureau also administers a grant ($1 million in FY 1997) to the Yale 
>Cambodia Genocide Program, which was initiated in 1994 through an Act of 
>Congress. The program assembles evidence concerning the leadership of 
>the Khmer Rouge and provides documentation of genocide, war crimes, and 
>crimes against humanity. It has established a Documentation Center in 
>Cambodia, which conducts research and provides the public with a record 
>of the horrors of the Pol Pot Regime. Although the events of last July 
>were a major setback to the international effort to promote a stable and 
>democratic Cambodia, programs such as this will help Cambodians continue 
>their struggle to overcome the catastrophic results of Kh~mer Rouge 
>The Regional Democracy Funds also are intended to provide 
>issue~-specific assistance for activities in several countries in a 
>given region~. In FY 1997, for example, my bureau directed $500,000 to 
>the Asia Foundation for a program that helps women in Cambodia, 
>Indonesia, Laos, Mongolia, the Pacific Islands, the Philippines, and 
>Thailand challenge economic, social, and political discrimination. 
>Working with women activists, women's NGOs, human rights groups and the 
>media, the program supports the training of women to conduct public 
>education campaigns on women's rights; the design of country-specific 
>action plans targeted toward the removal of discriminatory laws and 
>policies; and the holding of regional conferences to share successful 
>strategies. In addition, the program supported the work of local groups 
>and activists to combat violence against women. 
>My Bureau also is funding the development of an ASEAN human rights 
>network ($500,000 in FY 1997). This program will assist the efforts of 
>the ASEAN Human Rights Working Group to develop more formal and 
>regularized mechanisms for human rights cooperation in the region. It 
>also supports efforts to develop effective national human rights 
>organizations and strengthen existing human rights NGOs in ASEAN 
>member-states as part of an overall strategy to increase the attention 
>of ASEAN governments to human rights. 
>Assistance to Those Opposing Authoritarian Rule 
>Mr. Chairman, most of our efforts to promote human rights and democracy 
>focus on those countries most likely to make the transition to full 
>partnership in the international system~. But we also are working to 
>assist those who seek to promote democratic progress and human rights in 
>authoritarian countries. In these cases, our focus is on supporting NGOs 
>that seek to facilitate a peaceful transition to democracy and legal 
>institutions that may one day create a foundation for the rule of law. 
>In the case of Cuba, the United States is providing assistance to 
>U.S.-based NGOs to support individuals and organizations that promote 
>peaceful democratic change and the strengthening of civil society ($1.~5 
>million in FY 1997 and $2 million in FY 1998). Funded programs 
>disseminate information to the Cuban people, support the development of 
>civil society, and assist human rights groups and victims of 
>state-sponsored repression. Programs are conducted pursuant to the 
>authorities and purposes of the Cuban Democracy Act of 1992 and the 
>Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity (LIBERTAD) Act of 1996. 
>In Burma, my bureau directly administers Economic Support Funds ($2.5 
>million in FY 1997 and $5 million in FY 1998) that are divided between 
>democracy-buildin~g assistance through a grant to the National Endowment 
>for Democracy and humanitarian assistance through the International 
>Rescue Committee and World Concern Development Organization. Supported 
>activities include pro~-democracy work by such organizations as the Free 
>Trade Union of Burma; efforts by the National Coalition for Democracy to 
>focus international concern on Burma; the publication of pro-democracy 
>journals; and the broadcast of independent voices via radio. 
>In China, there are major obstacles to the development of a justice 
>system that protects and promotes the rights of the individual. As our 
>most recent human rights report noted, China's Constitution provides in 
>theory for an independent judiciary. In practice, however, the judicial 
>system is subject to the "policy guidance" of the Chinese Communist 
>Party and continues to deny defendants basic legal safeguards and due 
>process because authorities attach higher priority to maintaining public 
>order and suppressing political opposition than to implementing and 
>enforcing legal norms. Security police and personnel have been 
>responsible for numerous human rights abuses. Arbitrary arrest and 
>detention remain major systemic problems. 
>Yet China has made some progress on legal reform. Legislation passed in 
>recent years includes a number of laws with a potentially positive 
>impact on citizens' rights~. For example, the revised Criminal Procedure 
>Law, which came into effect in January 1997, provides for a defendant's 
>right to legal counsel, an active legal defense and other rights 
>recognized in international human rights instruments. If fully 
>implemented, the law would bring China's criminal law system closer 
>toward compliance with international norms. The recent commitment by the 
>Government of China to sign the International Covenant on Civil and 
>Political Rights also is a positive step. Accession to the Covenant 
>requires the Chinese to adhere to international standards on torture, 
>arbitrary detention, fair trial, and freedom of expression and 
>association, to name but a few. It creates a tool with which the 
>international community can measure the Chinese Government's commitment 
>and adherence to international standards. 
>To facilitate promotion of the rule of law in China, the United States 
>proposes to use Regional Democracy Funds to implement the October 1997 
>~summit agreement between the United States and China to cooperate on 
>rule of law issues. This ~agreement, reached between President Clinton 
>and China's President Jiang Zemin, presents an opening to improve basic 
>legal institutions in China -- the judiciary, the administrative 
>process, the legal profession, law schools and legal information 
>Proposed activities include expanded exchanges of legal experts, 
>training of judges and lawyers, the exchange of legal materials, sharing 
>ideas about legal assistance for the poor, working on administrative 
>procedure reforms, and strengthening commercial law and arbitration. No 
>U.S. funds would directly fund institutions of the Governme~nt of China. 
>For the most part, they would go to U.S. governmental and 
>non-governmental actors with a proven track record of promoting the rule 
>of law, including in China. Many of these organizations have expressed 
>interest in such a project. For example, the American Bar Association, 
>whose exemplary work in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union has 
>made significant contributions to the rule of law in that region, has 
>proposed to launch a similar program on China. 
>Not only will the initiative create significant opportunities for 
>improving China's legal ~~system, it also will further a broad range of 
>American interests and values. I must emphasize, however, that these 
>programs are not a replacement for our human rights policy on China. We 
>will continue to pursue vigorously our human rights objectives in China 
>through existing diplomatic and policy tools. That said, I feel that 
>rule of law activities can make a significant contribution to the 
>improvement of Chinese legal institutions in a way that, over time, is 
>likely to improve the legal protections guaranteed to all Chinese 
>Mr. Chairman, my testimony today has focused on the variety of policy 
>and funding mechanisms that my bureau has developed in order to enable 
>the United States to respond quickly to a variety of humanitarian, human 
>rights and democratization problems and crises. But it would be a 
>mistake to conclude without reviewing briefly my bureau's other, equally 
>important activities, about which I have recently testified before the 
>House International Relations Committee. 
>The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor has as one of its 
>primary missions the spotlighting of human rights abuses in all 
>countries of the world. It does so primarily through the preparation and 
>release of the annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices. We 
>disseminate these Reports in 193 countries to governments, media and 
>citizens. We express our positions vigorously and publicly~. Almost 
>daily, the Department speaks out on human rights. Speaking truth to 
>power is always an important weapon against oppression and injustice~. 
>But it is only one weapon. Our arsenal for promoting human rights 
>objectives is an increasingly broad one. We employ it actively. It 
>includes both traditional diplomacy and a range of new approaches that 
>we continue to expand and develop. 
>We support INS Asylum Officers and Immigration Judges by providing them 
>with expert advice on human rights conditions and recent political 
>developments overseas. For the past year we have placed our emphasis on 
>improving the quality of this information, particularly by strengthening 
>our "Profiles of Asylum Claims and Country Conditions Reports" and by 
>paying increased attention to issues of religious persecution. In the 
>coming year, we plan, for the first time, to create a full-time 
>permanent staff that will have responsibility for both commenting on 
>asylum applications and preparing the annual Country Reports on Human 
>Rights Practices. We believe having the same professional staff work 
>year-round on issues of persecution and mistreatment will strengthen 
>both our advice to asylum adjudicators and our annual Reports. 
>We support the efforts of free trade unions around the world to become 
>more effective defenders of worker and human rights. Free trade unions 
>played a critical role in promoting and defending democracy in the Cold 
>War era. They play an equally important role today by working to 
>eliminate child labor and bring about more equitable distribution of 
>economic benefits. In line with the administration's Model Business 
>Principles~, my bureau supports the joint efforts of union and employer 
>groups to promote the adoption of corporate codes of conduct that 
>strengthen democratic values in the workplace. 
>We work closely with non-governmental organizations to promote core 
>human rights principles, including religious freedom and women's 
>rights~. During my tenure, I have facilitated broad and regular 
>communication between the human rights community and the Department of 
>State. The Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom Abroad is only one 
>example of that effort. 
>Through bilateral measures, we address democracy and human rights 
>concerns in all our relationships. In addition to assistance programs 
>and diplomatic engagement, we employ a wide variety of other measures, 
>including sanctions and restrictions on international financing, arms 
>sales and visas. The President, the First Lady, the Vice President, and 
>the Secretary of State all repeatedly raise specific human rights cases 
>and our work to promote democracy in their meetings with foreign 
>leaders~. For example, President Clinton has raised human rights and 
>democratization concerns at every stop during his trip to Africa, 
>emphasizing particularly his commitment to strengthen international 
>efforts to prevent genocide. Secretary Albright's deep personal 
>commitment to these issues makes her a particularly forceful and 
>effective advocate. She has instructed our ambassadors on dozens of 
>occasions to raise specific human rights issues with their host 
>Finally, we work closely with Congress to coordinate our efforts and 
>develop a consensus on the best means and direction for United States 
>policy in the field of human rights, democracy and labor. I would like 
>to offer my thanks to the Members of Congress and in particular to the 
>Members of this Committee for their strong support of our efforts to 
>promote and protect human rights and democracy around the world. Your 
>support has been bipartisan and bicameral, and we have worked together 
>to address the challenges of the post-Cold War world. Our goal is to 
>expand the community of democratic nations so that the world will be 
>better-equipped to confront the dangers and challenges of 
>under~development, conflict, catastrophe, or authoritarian rule. 
>Thank you. 
>(end text)