Text: H.R.5273 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Referred in Senate (11/28/2018)

 
[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
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[H.R. 5273 Referred in Senate (RFS)]

<DOC>
115th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 5273


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                           November 28, 2018

Received; read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 AN ACT


 
 To reduce global fragility and violence by improving the capacity of 
the United States to reduce and address the causes of violence, violent 
            conflict, and fragility, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Global Fragility and Violence 
Reduction Act of 2018''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds the following:
            (1) According to the United Nations, an unprecedented 68.5 
        million people around the world, the highest level ever 
        recorded, are currently forcibly displaced from their homes.
            (2) According to the World Bank, violence and violent 
        conflict are now the leading causes of displacement and food 
        insecurity worldwide, driving 80 percent of humanitarian needs, 
        with the same conflicts accounting for the majority of forcibly 
        displaced persons every year since 1991.
            (3) According to the World Health Organization, preventable 
        forms of violence kill at least 1.4 million people each year. 
        According to the Institute for Economics and Peace, violence 
        containment costs the global economy $14.76 trillion a year, or 
        12.4 percent of the world's GDP. If violence were to decrease 
        uniformly across the world by just 10 percent, the global 
        economy would gain $1.48 trillion each year.
            (4) Violence and violent conflict underpin many of the 
        United States Government's key national security challenges. 
        Notably, violent conflicts allow for environments in which 
        terrorist organizations recruit and thrive, while the 
        combination of violence, corruption, poverty, poor governance, 
        and underdevelopment often enables transnational gangs and 
        criminal networks to wreak havoc and commit atrocities 
        worldwide.
            (5) According to new research by the University of Maryland 
        and University of Pittsburgh, exposure to violence increases 
        support for violence and violent extremism. Research 
        increasingly finds exposure to violence as a predictor of 
        future participation in violence, including violent extremism.
            (6) United States foreign policy and assistance efforts in 
        highly violent and fragile states remain governed by an 
        outdated patchwork of authorities that prioritize responding to 
        immediate needs rather than solving the problems that cause 
        them.
            (7) Lessons learned over the past 20 years, documented by 
        the 2013 Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction 
        Lessons Learned Study, the 2016 Fragility Study Group report, 
        and the 2018 Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Lessons 
        Learned Study on Stabilization, show that effective, sustained 
        United States efforts to reduce violence and stabilize fragile 
        and violence-affected states require clearly defined goals and 
        strategies, adequate long-term funding, rigorous and iterative 
        conflict analysis, coordination across the United States 
        Government, including strong civil-military coordination, and 
        integration with national and sub-national partners, including 
        local civil society organizations, local justice systems, and 
        local governance structures.
            (8) The ``Stabilization Assistance Review'' released in 
        2018 by the Departments of State and Defense and the United 
        States Agency for International Development states, ``The 
        United States has strong national security and economic 
        interests in reducing levels of violence and promoting 
        stability in areas affected by armed conflict.'' The Review 
        further states, ``Stabilization is an inherently political 
        endeavor that requires aligning U.S. Government efforts - 
        diplomatic engagement, foreign assistance, and defense - toward 
        supporting locally legitimate authorities and systems to 
        peaceably manage conflict and prevent violence.''.

SEC. 3. STATEMENT OF POLICY.

    It is the policy of the United States to--
            (1) ensure that all relevant Federal departments and 
        agencies coordinate to achieve coherent, long-term goals for 
        programs designed to prevent violence, stabilize conflict-
        affected areas, and address the long-term causes of violence 
        and fragility, including when implementing the Global Fragility 
        and Violence Reduction Initiative described in section 5(a);
            (2) seek to improve global, regional, and local 
        coordination of relevant international and multilateral 
        development and donor organizations regarding efforts to 
        prevent violence, stabilize conflict-affected areas, and 
        address the long-term causes of violence and fragility in 
        fragile and violence-affected countries, and, where practicable 
        and appropriate, align such efforts with multilateral goals and 
        indicators;
            (3) expand and enhance the effectiveness of United States 
        foreign assistance programs and activities to prevent violence, 
        stabilize conflict-affected areas, and address the long-term 
        causes of violence and fragility, including programs intended 
        to improve the indicators described in section 5(d)(1);
            (4) support the research and development of effective 
        approaches to prevent violence, stabilize conflict-affected 
        areas, and address the long-term causes of violence and 
        fragility; and
            (5) improve the monitoring, evaluation, learning, and 
        adaptation tools and authorities for relevant Federal 
        departments and agencies working to prevent violence, stabilize 
        conflict-affected areas, and address the long-term causes of 
        violence and fragility.

SEC. 4. SENSE OF CONGRESS REGARDING ASSISTANCE FOR THE GLOBAL FRAGILITY 
              AND VIOLENCE REDUCTION INITIATIVE.

    It is the sense of Congress that the President, the Secretary of 
State, the Administrator of USAID, the Secretary of Defense, and the 
heads of other relevant Federal departments and agencies, should work 
with Congress to provide sufficient types and levels of funding to--
            (1) allow for more adaptive program planning and 
        implementation under the initiative and priority country or 
        regional plans required under section 5, including through 
        exemptions from specific and minimum funding levels when such 
        exemptions would make programs better able to respond to 
        monitoring and evaluation or changed circumstances in relevant 
        countries;
            (2) better integrate conflict and violence reduction 
        activities into other program areas where appropriate; and
            (3) contribute to the creation of transparent and 
        accountable multilateral funds, initiatives, and strategies to 
        enhance and better coordinate both private and public efforts 
        to prevent violence, stabilize conflict-affected areas, and 
        address the long-term causes of violence and fragility.

SEC. 5. GLOBAL INITIATIVE TO REDUCE FRAGILITY AND VIOLENCE.

    (a) Initiative.--The Secretary of State, in coordination with the 
Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development 
(USAID), the Secretary of Defense, and the heads of other relevant 
Federal departments and agencies, shall establish an interagency 
initiative, to be referred to as the ``Global Initiative to Reduce 
Fragility and Violence'', to prevent violence, stabilize conflict-
affected areas, and address the long-term causes of violence and 
fragility.
    (b) Implementation Plan.--Not later than 180 days after the date of 
the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State, in coordination with 
the Administrator of USAID, the Secretary of Defense, and the heads of 
other relevant Federal departments and agencies, shall develop and 
submit to the appropriate congressional committees an interagency 
implementation plan for the Global Initiative to Reduce Fragility and 
Violence established pursuant to subsection (a) that includes the 
following:
            (1) Descriptions of the overall goals, objectives, 
        criteria, and metrics guiding the implementation, including 
        with respect to prioritizing countries and measuring progress.
            (2) A list of the priority countries and regions selected 
        pursuant to subsection (d)(2).
            (3) Identification of the roles and responsibilities of 
        each participating Federal department or agency, while ensuring 
        that with respect to activities relating to stabilization--
                    (A) the Department of State shall be the overall 
                lead for establishing United States foreign policy and 
                advancing diplomatic and political efforts;
                    (B) USAID shall be the lead implementing agency for 
                development, humanitarian, and related non-security 
                programs;
                    (C) the Department of Defense shall support the 
                activities of the Department of State and USAID as 
                appropriate, including by providing requisite security 
                and reinforcing civilian efforts, with the concurrence 
                of the Secretary of State and Administrator of USAID; 
                and
                    (D) other Federal departments and agencies shall 
                support the activities of the Department of State and 
                USAID as appropriate, with the concurrence of the 
                Secretary of State and Administrator of USAID.
            (4) Identification of the authorities, staffing, and other 
        resource requirements needed to effectively implement the 
        initiative.
            (5) Descriptions of the organizational steps the Department 
        of State, USAID, the Department of Defense, and each other 
        relevant Federal department or agency will take to improve 
        planning, coordination, implementation, monitoring, evaluation, 
        adaptive management, and iterative learning with respect to the 
        programs under such initiative.
            (6) Descriptions of the steps each relevant Federal 
        department or agency will take to improve coordination and 
        collaboration under such initiative with international 
        development organizations, international donors, multilateral 
        organizations, and the private sector.
            (7) Descriptions of potential areas of improved public and 
        private sector research and development, including with 
        academic, philanthropic, and civil society organizations, on 
        more effective approaches to preventing violence, stabilizing 
        conflict-affected areas, and addressing the long-term causes of 
        violence and fragility.
            (8) Plans for regularly evaluating and updating, on an 
        iterative basis--
                    (A) the Global Initiative to Reduce Fragility and 
                Violence;
                    (B) the interagency implementation plan described 
                in this subsection; and
                    (C) the priority country and regional plans 
                described in subsection (c).
    (c) Priority Country and Regional Plans.--Not later than 1 year 
after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of State, in 
coordination with the Administrator of USAID, the Secretary of Defense, 
and the heads of other relevant Federal departments and agencies, shall 
develop and submit to the appropriate congressional committees 10-year 
plans to align and integrate the diplomatic, development, security, and 
other relevant activities of the United States Government with the 
initiative required under subsection (a) for each of the priority 
countries and regions designated pursuant to subsection (d). Such 
priority country and regional plans shall include:
            (1) Specific interagency plans for coordination and 
        implementation under the country or regional plan.
            (2) Descriptions of how and when the relevant goals, 
        objectives, and plans for each priority country or region will 
        be incorporated into relevant United States country plans and 
        strategies, including Department of State Integrated Country 
        Strategies, USAID Country Development Cooperation Strategies, 
        and Department of Defense Campaign Plans, Operational Plans, 
        and Regional Strategies, as well as any equivalent or successor 
        plans or strategies.
            (3) Interagency plans to ensure that appropriate local 
        actors, including government and civil society entities and 
        organizations led by women, youth, or under-represented 
        communities, have roles in developing, implementing, 
        monitoring, evaluating, and updating relevant aspects of each 
        such country or regional plan.
            (4) Clear, transparent, and measurable diplomatic, 
        development, and security benchmarks, timetables, and 
        performance metrics for each such country and region that align 
        with best practices where applicable.
            (5) Interagency plans for monitoring and evaluation, 
        adaptive management, and iterative learning that provide for 
        regular and iterative policy and program adaptations based on 
        outcomes, lessons learned, and other evidence gathered from 
        each such country or region and across such countries and 
        regions.
            (6) Descriptions of the available policy tools to prevent 
        violence, stabilize conflict-affected areas, and address the 
        long-term causes of violence and fragility in each such country 
        or region.
            (7) Descriptions of the resources and authorities that 
        would be required for each relevant Federal department or 
        agency to best implement each such country or regional plan, as 
        well as evidence-based iterative updates to such plans.
            (8) Descriptions of potential areas of improved partnership 
        with respect to such country or region, regarding efforts to 
        prevent violence, stabilize conflict-affected areas, and 
        address the long-term causes of violence and fragility, between 
        the United States Government and--
                    (A) international development organizations;
                    (B) relevant international donors;
                    (C) multilateral organizations; and
                    (D) the private sector.
    (d) Designation of Priority Countries and Regions.--
            (1) Identification of candidate countries and regions.--The 
        Secretary of State, in coordination with the Administrator of 
        USAID and the Secretary of Defense and in consultation with the 
        appropriate congressional committees, shall develop a list of 
        candidate countries and regions to be considered for inclusion 
        under the initiative on the basis of--
                    (A) clearly defined indicators of high levels of 
                violence and fragility in such country or region, such 
                as--
                            (i) violence committed by armed groups, 
                        gender-based violence, and violence against 
                        children and youth;
                            (ii) prevalence of, and citizen support 
                        for, adversarial armed groups;
                            (iii) internal and external population 
                        displacement;
                            (iv) patterns of human rights violations, 
                        including early warning indicators of the 
                        commission of genocide or other atrocities;
                            (v) poor governance, pervasive corruption, 
                        and political instability; and
                            (vi) vulnerability to current or future 
                        transnational threats; and
                    (B) the capacity and opportunity to work across 
                Federal departments and agencies and with local 
                partners and other donors to prevent violence, 
                stabilize conflict-affected areas, and address the 
                long-term causes of violence and fragility with respect 
                to such country or region, including by measurably--
                            (i) improving inclusive, transparent, and 
                        accountable power structures, including 
                        effective, legitimate, and resilient national 
                        and sub-national institutions;
                            (ii) improving effective and respected 
                        conflict prevention, mitigation, management, 
                        and resolution mechanisms;
                            (iii) reducing levels of support among the 
                        residents of such country or region for 
                        violence, violent extremism, and adversarial 
                        armed groups;
                            (iv) ensuring strong foundations for 
                        plurality, non-discrimination, human rights, 
                        rule of law, and equal access to justice;
                            (v) addressing political, social, economic, 
                        and environmental vulnerabilities, grievances, 
                        and conflicts;
                            (vi) ensuring inclusive economic 
                        development and enabling business environments; 
                        and
                            (vii) improving resilience to transnational 
                        stresses and shocks, including from organized 
                        crime, violent extremist organizations, and 
                        economic and food markets crises.
            (2) Selection of priority countries and regions.--From 
        among the candidate countries and regions identified pursuant 
        to paragraph (1), the Secretary of State, in coordination with 
        the Administrator of USAID and the Secretary of Defense, shall 
        select certain countries as ``priority countries'' and certain 
        regions as ``priority regions'' in a manner that ensures that--
                    (A) countries and regions are selected in a 
                sufficient number and of sufficient diversity to 
                provide indicators of the various drivers and early 
                warnings of violence, conflict, and fragility, as well 
                as best practices for United States efforts to prevent 
                violence, stabilize conflict-affected areas, and 
                address the long-term causes of violence and fragility;
                    (B) not fewer than three countries or regions are 
                designated as ``Stabilization Countries'' or 
                ``Stabilization Regions'', in which the current levels 
                of violence, violent conflict, or fragility are among 
                the highest in the world;
                    (C) not fewer than three countries or regions are 
                designated as ``Prevention Countries'' or ``Prevention 
                Regions'', in which current levels of violence, violent 
                conflict, or fragility are lower than such levels in 
                Stabilization Countries or Stabilization Regions but 
                warning signs for future violence, conflict, or 
                fragility are significant;
                    (D) regions, rather than individual countries, are 
                selected where the threat or spillover of violence, 
                conflict, or fragility threatens the stability of 
                multiple countries within a single geographic region; 
                and
                    (E) the countries and regions selected are in the 
                areas of responsibility of at least three geographic 
                bureaus of the Department of State.
    (e) Stakeholder Consultation.--The initiative required under 
subsection (a) shall be developed in coordination with representatives 
of local civil society and national and local governance entities, as 
well as relevant international development organizations, multilateral 
organizations, donors, and relevant private, academic, and 
philanthropic entities, as appropriate.
    (f) Congressional Consultation.--The Secretary of State, the 
Administrator of USAID, and the Secretary of Defense shall provide 
regular briefings on the implementation of this Act to any appropriate 
congressional committee upon the request of such committee.
    (g) Measuring Violence, Violent Conflict, and Fragility.--For the 
purposes of implementing, monitoring, and evaluating the effectiveness 
of the priority country and regional plans required under subsection 
(c), progress towards preventing violence, stabilizing conflict-
affected areas, and addressing the long-term causes of violence and 
fragility shall be measured by indicators established for each such 
country by relevant inter-agency country teams for each such country, 
informed by consultations with the stakeholders specified in subsection 
(e).

SEC. 6. IMPLEMENTATION AND UPDATES OF PRIORITY COUNTRY AND REGIONAL 
              PLANS.

    The Secretary of State, in coordination with the Administrator of 
USAID, the Secretary of Defense, and the heads of other relevant 
Federal departments and agencies, and in consultation with the relevant 
United States Ambassadors, USAID Mission Directors, geographic 
Combatant Commanders, and other relevant individuals with 
responsibility over activities in each priority country or region 
designated pursuant to section 5, shall ensure that--
            (1) the Global Initiative to Reduce Fragility and Violence 
        and the priority country and regional plans required under such 
        section are implemented, updated, and coordinated on a regular 
        and iterative basis;
            (2) such initiative and country and regional plans are used 
        to guide United States Government policy at a senior level and 
        incorporated into relevant strategies and plans across the 
        United States Government and in each such country;
            (3) resources for all relevant activities and requirements 
        of such initiative and country and regional plans are 
        prioritized, requested, and used consistent with such 
        initiative and country and regional plans; and
            (4) the results of program monitoring and evaluation under 
        such initiative and country and regional plans are regularly 
        reviewed and used to determine continuation, modification, or 
        termination of future year programming.

SEC. 7. BIENNIAL REPORTS AND CONGRESSIONAL CONSULTATION.

    (a) Biennial Reports.--Not later than two years after the date of 
the enactment of this Act and every two years thereafter until the date 
that is 10 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the 
Secretary of State, the Administrator of USAID, the Secretary of 
Defense, and the heads of other relevant Federal departments and 
agencies shall jointly submit to the appropriate congressional 
committees a report on progress made and lessons learned with respect 
to the Global Initiative to Reduce Fragility and Violence and each 
priority country or regional plan required under section 5, including--
            (1) descriptions of steps taken to incorporate such 
        initiative and such country or regional plans into relevant 
        strategies and plans that affect such countries or regions;
            (2) accountings of all funding received and obligated to 
        implement each such country or regional plan during the past 
        two years, as well as funding requested, planned, and projected 
        for the following two years;
            (3) descriptions of progress made towards the goals and 
        objectives established for each such priority country or 
        region, including progress made towards achieving the specific 
        targets, metrics, and indicators described in section 5(b); and
            (4) descriptions of updates made during the past two years 
        to the goals, objectives, plans of action, and other elements 
        described in section 5 for each such country or regional plan, 
        as well as any changes made to programs based on the results of 
        monitoring and evaluation.
    (b) Congressional Consultation.--In addition to the reports 
required under subsection (a), the Secretary of State, the 
Administrator of USAID, the Secretary of Defense, and the heads of 
other relevant Federal departments and agencies shall jointly consult 
with the appropriate congressional committees at least once a year 
regarding progress made on the initiative and priority country and 
regional plans required under section 5.

SEC. 8. GAO REVIEW.

    (a) In General.--Not later than two years after the date of the 
enactment of this Act and every two years thereafter until the date 
that is 10 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the 
Comptroller General of the United States shall consult with the 
Chairman and Ranking Member of the Foreign Relations Committee of the 
Senate and the Foreign Affairs Committee of the House of 
Representatives regarding opportunities for independent review of the 
activities under the Global Initiative to Reduce Fragility and Violence 
and the priority country and regional plans required by section 5, 
including--
            (1) opportunities to--
                    (A) assess the extent to which United States 
                Government activities in each priority country 
                designated pursuant to section 5 are being implemented 
                in accordance with the initiative and the relevant 
                country or regional plan required under such section;
                    (B) assess the processes and procedures for 
                coordinating among and within each relevant Federal 
                department or agency when implementing such initiative 
                and each such country or regional plan;
                    (C) assess the monitoring and evaluation efforts 
                under such initiative and each such country or regional 
                plan, including assessments of the progress made and 
                lessons learned with respect to each such plan, as well 
                as any changes made to activities based on the results 
                of such monitoring and evaluation; and
                    (D) recommend changes necessary to better implement 
                United States Government activities in accordance with 
                such initiative and country and regional plans, as well 
                as recommendations for any changes to such initiative 
                or plans; and
            (2) such other matters the Comptroller General determines 
        to be appropriate.
    (b) Availability of Information.--All relevant Federal departments 
and agencies shall make all relevant data, documents, and other 
information available to the Comptroller General for purposes of 
conducting independent reviews pursuant to this section.

SEC. 9. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act--
            (1) Appropriate congressional committees.--The term 
        ``appropriate congressional committees'' means--
                    (A) the Committees on Foreign Relations, Armed 
                Services, and Appropriations of the Senate; and
                    (B) the Committees on Foreign Affairs, Armed 
                Services, and Appropriations of the House of 
                Representatives.
            (2) Relevant federal department or agency.--The term 
        ``relevant Federal department or agency'' means the Department 
        of the Treasury and any other Federal department or agency the 
        President determines is relevant to carry out the purposes of 
        this Act.

            Passed the House of Representatives November 27, 2018.

            Attest:

                                                 KAREN L. HAAS,

                                                                 Clerk.