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Washington, D.C. – House Foreign Affairs Lead Republican Michael McCaul has introduced H.R. 4914, the Havana Syndrome Attacks Response Act. The full text of the legislation can be found here. The legislation is aimed at addressing the attacks on U.S. diplomatic personnel happening around the world that the National Academy of Sciences said are likely caused by “directed, pulsed radio frequency energy,” and holding those responsible accountable. 

“Around the world, American personnel are being attacked in their homes, in hotels, and even on public streets. What first started in Havana in late 2016 has now expanded to more than 130 possible cases from all around the world – including right here in Washington, DC. That’s why I’ve introduced the Havana Syndrome Attacks Response Act. We must find out who is behind these attacks and hold them responsible. And we must reassure the people who serve our nation overseas that we have their backs.”

Havana Syndrome Attacks Response Act Section-by-Section Summary

Sec. 1. SHORT TITLE. “Havana Syndrome Attacks Response Act”

Sec. 2. FINDINGS. Based on open source materials, details the history of
clandestine attacks on U.S. personnel causing persistent brain injury.

Sec. 3. STATEMENT OF POLICY. States the policy of the United States:

• to detect, deter, and punish these attacks;
• to provide assistance to harmed U.S. personnel;
• to hold responsible any persons, entities, or governments who conduct these attacks;
• to prioritize research into protective countermeasures; and
• to convey to foreign governments at the highest levels U.S. concern about
these attacks.

Sec. 4. IMPOSITION OF SANCTIONS AGAINST FOREIGN PERSONS. Requires property blocking and visa denial sanctions against foreign persons whom the President determines knowingly directed or carried out these attacks. Includes standard exceptions for intelligence and law enforcement activities.

Sec. 5. IMPOSITION OF SANCTIONS AGAINST FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS. Within 60 days after receiving persuasive information that a foreign government is responsible for such attacks, requires the President to determine and report to Congress. If the President determines that a foreign government has conducted such attacks, requires the imposition of certain sanctions against that government:

• Prohibition on U.S. foreign assistance (other than urgent humanitarian assistance);
• Restrictions on commercial exports of certain items subject to U.S. export controls;
• Prohibition on arms sales and munitions export licenses;
• Prohibition on Foreign Military Financing; and
• Denial of U.S. credit and financial assistance.

Sec. 6. BRIEFING AND REPORT TO CONGRESS. Requires a briefing (within 60 days) and report (within 180 days) to Congress on these attacks and U.S. responses.