(November 26, 2018 / JNS) The U.S. House of Representatives is soon expected to pass a bipartisan bill that would enact sanctions on those who use human shields in war.
The Senate unanimously passed its version in October.
Introduced by Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) and Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.), and co-sponsored by 25 representatives, the Sanctioning the Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act would officially condemn the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hezbollah’s use of human shields “as a gross violation of internationally recognized human rights.” It also calls for the United States to introduce a resolution at the U.N. Security Council to clinch backing for a resolution slapping sanctions on Hezbollah for the use of humans as military shield.
The bill mandates the president to impose sanctions on any foreign state government agency that “knowingly and materially supports, orders, controls, directs or otherwise engages in” the exercise of human shields by the terrorist organizations Hezbollah and Hamas.
The president may waive sanctions for up to 120 days if he or she reports to Congress saying that a waiver is crucial to national-security interests.
U.S. President Donald Trump signed the bipartisan Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act last month that expands and strengthen the limits of economic sanctions against Hezbollah.
It enables sanctions against not just foreign governments, per the 2015 version with the same title, but also against foreign individuals and companies aiding the group’s fundraising or recruitment activities, including backing its media outlets.