Media Contact: caroline.campbell@mail.house.gov

Washington D.C. – This week, the House passed four bipartisan bills to promote American interests at home and abroad and bolster national security. These bills promote economic partnership between U.S.-Mexico, protect our diplomats through enhanced security, combat anti-Semitism globally, and more. Of note, H.R. 192, a bill to authorize counter terrorism operations in Africa known as the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP) was included in the legislation. Introduced by House Foreign Affairs Committee lead Republican Michael McCaul (R-TX), this bill strengthens counter terrorism operations and better coordinates U.S. assistance in Africa.

The Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP), created in 2005, is a multi-agency effort to assist partners in West and North Africa to increase their immediate and long-term capabilities to address terrorist threats and prevent the spread of radicalization.  This bill will codify the TSCTP and allow for this partnership to endure in an area where the terror threat is rapidly rising.

 

Ranking Member McCaul: “With the fall of the Caliphate, ISIS fighters have splintered beyond Iraq and Syria to pursue safe havens in places susceptible to violent extremism. In Africa’s Trans-Sahara, where the presence of existing terrorist organizations such as Boko Haram and Al Shabaah endures, the threat of radical influence from the Islamic State is alarmingly high with jihadists pouring into the region. My bill – which previously passed the House in the 115th Congress – authorizes for the first time a program called the Trans-Sahara Counter Terrorism Partnership (TSCTP). This program works with countries such as Chad, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria, to build their capacity to conduct counterterrorism operations, prevent the spread of violent extremism, and strengthen the rule of law.

“I commend my colleagues in the House for passing this vital bipartisan legislation to prevent terrorism from gaining a larger foothold with our African partners.”

 

House Passed Legislation Includes:

 

H.R. 192, Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership Act, introduced by Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), to establish an interagency program to improve immediate and long-term capabilities to counter terrorist threats in North and West Africa.

  • Watch Chairman McCaul’s floor remarks on H.R. 192, here.

 

H.R. 221, Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Act, introduced by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), to require the President to appoint a Special Envoy within the State Department to monitor and combat anti-Semitism across the globe.

  • Watch Chairman McCaul’s floor remarks on H.R. 221, here.

 

H.R. 115, Protecting Diplomats from Surveillance Through Consumer Devices Act, introduced by Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX), to require the Department of State to establish a policy on the use of location-tracking consumer devices, such as Fitbits and Apple Watches, by diplomats at U.S. consular facilities and other high-risk areas.

  • Watch Chairman McCaul’s floor remarks on H.R. 115, here.

 

H.R. 133, U.S.-Mexico Economic Partnership Act, introduced by Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX), to promote economic partnership and cooperation between the U.S. and Mexico with a focus on energy, health, entrepreneurship, and education sectors.

  • Watch Chairman McCaul’s floor remarks on H.R. 133, here.