House of Representatives Calls on Executive Branch to Apply Global Magnitsky Sanctions to Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia
On April 10, 2018, the U.S. House of Representatives agreed to a resolution calling on the U.S. Secretary of State, in cooperation with the Secertary of the Treasury, to “apply appropriate sanctions on foreign persons or entities responsible for extrajudicial killings, torture, or other gross violations of internationally recognized human rights committed against any nationals in Ethiopia as provided for in the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act.”
The call to apply new U.S. Global Magnitsky human rights and corruption sanctions H. Res. 128 is one prong of the Resolution’s provisions that, separately and together, are aimed at “supporting respect for human rights and encouraging inclusive governance in Ethiopia.”
As H. Res. 128 is a simple resolution, the House’s agreement to the measure finalized its status and no Senate approval or Presidential signature is required. Accordingly, H. Res. 128 does not have the force of law. However, given the strong support for the measure, the importance of the United States-Ethiopia relationship to both countries, and the role of Congress and nongovernmental organizations in the Global Magnitsky Sanctions framework, the existence of the resolution is significant. It is likely that members of Congress and outside advocacy groups will continue to monitor and lobby for sanctions and other action in response to events in Ethiopia.
For more on the Global Magnitsky Act and Sanctions, view MassPoint’s Global Magnitsky Series (and visit again for future installments).