☷National Security Memorandum on Safeguards and Accountability With Respect to Transferred Defense Articles and Defense Services
White House ( By Press Release office)
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Now , let ' s talk about safeguards and accountability . Both the Department of State and the Department of Defense have end - use monitoring programs to ensure compliance with the Arms Export Control Act . We also believe in promoting adherence to international law and encourage other states and partners to do the same . Our policy , as stated in Executive Order 13732 from July 1 , 2016 , is for executive departments and agencies to work with foreign partners to share and learn best practices for minimizing civilian casualties through proper training and assistance . To effectively meet its obligations under US law , the US needs to have a good understanding of how its foreign partners adhere to international law , including human rights and humanitarian law . As part of this , the US looks at state responsibility and whether its partners comply with humanitarian law when deciding on military assistance and joint operations . That ' s why I ' m issuing this memo , which requires the Secretary of State to get written assurances from foreign governments receiving defense items , and for the Secretaries of State and Defense to provide regular reports to Congress . Alongside this , the Secretaries of State and Defense must ensure that any transfers of defense items comply with international and domestic law , including humanitarian and human rights law . This policy applies to future provisions of defense items to foreign governments using congressional funds , including those for Foreign Military Financing and Ukraine Security Assistance . Before providing these items , the Secretary of State must get written assurances from the recipient country that they will use the items in line with humanitarian and international law . 2378 - 1 ) and applicable international law , and where the Secretary of State deems it appropriate , obtain credible and reliable written assurances from representatives of the receiving State that the use of such defensive items in any area of armed conflict by the receiving State is consistent with applicable international law . laws , recipient countries will directly or indirectly facilitate , but not arbitrarily deny , restrict , or otherwise impede the transportation or delivery of U . S . humanitarian assistance and U . S . Government - supported international efforts to provide humanitarian assistance . The warranties described in this subsection shall be enforced in accordance with paragraph ( b ) of this section . ( b ) In the event that the Secretary of State or the Secretary of Defense , as the case may be , assesses that the credibility or reliability of the assurances provided by a recipient country pursuant to subsection ( a ) of this section has been called into question and should be reexamined , the Secretary of State or the Secretary of Defense , as the case may be , ) shall report to the President , through the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs , within 45 days of the assessment and shall identify appropriate next steps necessary to assess and remediate the situation . Such remedies may range from actions ranging from renewal of warranties to suspension of any further transfer of defense articles or discretionary defense services . ( c ) Recognizing that a reasonable period of time will be required for foreign governments that have received such defense articles from the Department of State or Department of Defense as of the date of this memorandum to obtain the assurances required by subsection ( a ) of this section , the Secretary of State shall , as follows ( i ) With respect to any State to which subsection ( a ) of this section applies and which the Secretary of State considers to be involved , as of In an active armed conflict , the Secretary shall obtain the assurances outlined in subsection ( a ) of this section within 45 days of the date of this memorandum and shall provide updates to the President through the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs on the status of recipient countries providing such assurances . If the Secretary of State does not obtain such assurances within 45 days of the date of this memorandum , transfers of defense articles and defense services , as applicable , shall be suspended until the required assurances are obtained . Section 2 pertains to reporting to congressional committees . The Secretaries of State and Defense must provide written reports , and if necessary , verbal briefings by senior officials , to the Senate ' s Committee on Foreign Relations , Committee on Armed Services , and Committee on Appropriations , as well as the House of Representatives ' Committee on Foreign Affairs , Committee on Armed Services , and Committee on Appropriations . Other congressional national security committees may also request these reports as appropriate . The written report needs to cover defense articles and services provided by the Departments of State or Defense that are described in subsections 1 ( a ) and 1 ( e ) of this memo . It should include: ( i ) any new assurances obtained since the last report; ( ii ) an assessment of any credible reports or allegations that these defense articles and services have been used in a way that goes against international law , including humanitarian law . This assessment should determine if there has been any violation of international law and if so , whether the recipient country has taken appropriate action; ( iii ) a description of the procedures used to make the assessment mentioned in subsection ( a ) ( ii ) of this section; ( iv ) an assessment and analysis of ( 1 ) any credible reports indicating that the use of these defense articles and services has not followed established best practices for reducing harm to civilians , including practices adopted by the US military , and measures taken in response to the Department of Defense ' s Civilian Harm Mitigation and Response Action Plan or incidents reviewed according to the Department of State ' s Civilian Harm Incident Response Guidance; and ( 2 ) the extent to which efforts to encourage effective implementation of these best practices have been included in the relevant US security assistance program; ( v ) a description of the procedures used to make the assessment and analysis mentioned in subsection ( iv ) of this section; ( vi ) a description of any known cases where the intended recipient foreign government has not received these defense articles and services or where they have been misused for purposes that are not aligned with their intended purposes , along with a description of any actions taken to address the situation; ( vii ) an assessment and analysis of whether each foreign government recipient has followed the assurances received according to section 1 ( a ) ( ii ) of this memo , whether they are in compliance with section 620I of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 ( 22 U . S . C . 2378 - 1 ) , and whether they have fully cooperated with US Government and internationally supported efforts to provide humanitarian assistance in areas of armed conflict where they are using these defense articles and services; and ( viii ) a description of any challenges faced in conducting the assessment and analysis mentioned in subsections ( a ) ( i ) - ( vii ) of this section , including whether or not there is available information that addresses the aforementioned subsections . JOSEPH R . BIDEN JR .
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