Consistent with Section 5 of the Elie Wiesel Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act of 2018 (P.L. 115-441) (the Elie Wiesel Act), the Department of State submits this annual report, on behalf of the President, on U.S. efforts to anticipate, prevent, and respond to atrocities. The United States is committed to promoting respect for human rights globally and reaffirms atrocity prevention as a core national security interest. In July 2022, the United States released its first Strategy to Anticipate, Prevent, and Respond to Atrocities (SAPRA). This report demonstrates the growing integration of U.S. strategies on gender, atrocity prevention, and conflict prevention and stabilization to prevent mass atrocities. Over the last year, the White House-led Atrocity Prevention Task Force (APTF) implemented the 2022 recommendations, which included SAPRA implementation, identifying pilot countries for priority prevention efforts, continuing to engage in ongoing atrocity contexts, and training Foreign Service officers assigned to countries experiencing or at risk of mass atrocities. The APTF continued to consult with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and civil society in connection with the implementation of the Elie Wiesel Act, while taking coordinated joint actions with likeminded partners to prevent and respond to atrocities. This report highlights some illustrative examples of U.S. efforts in atrocity prevention and response coordinated by the APTF from May 2022 to April 2023 and details contributions across U.S. government agencies.
U.S. Efforts to Prevent Atrocities – Key Highlights
During the reporting period, the U.S. government increased its focus on atrocity prevention, including by identifying pilot countries for priority prevention efforts, where U.S. teams conducted in-country assessment missions and applied the U.S. Atrocity Risk Assessment Framework (ARAF) to evaluate risk factors and the most likely atrocity scenarios and then developed recommendations for U.S. government policy and action. APTF members are working within their departments and agencies to operationalize the recommendations.
Additionally, individual departments and agencies continued their own prevention efforts. For example, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) implemented a prevention initiative in Yemen that worked with local leaders to establish an early warning response system and supported 120 local leaders to mobilize more than 60 community-based interventions that addressed key issues such as discrimination, human rights violations, and community conflict. These and other locally led initiatives addressed immediate health and security risks, while also reducing inter-ethnic tensions and improving representation of marginalized communities.
The U.S. government incorporated prevention efforts into the atrocity response and recovery actions listed in the following sections by continuing to address underlying drivers of conflict that contributed to the onset of current or recent atrocities. By addressing these drivers of conflict, including during and after atrocities, the United States is mitigating the risk of escalation or onset of new atrocities.
U.S. Responses to Current or Recent Atrocities – Country Highlights
During the reporting period, the Administration continued to respond to current and recent atrocities around the world. On February 18, 2023, Secretary Blinken announced his determination that members of Russia’s forces and other Russian officials had committed crimes against humanity in Ukraine. These crimes include murder, torture, rape and other forms of sexual violence, and deportation of population. The United States continues to impose sanctions, visa restrictions, and other actions on individuals and entities connected to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, including designating the Kremlin-backed Wagner Group as a transnational criminal organization on January 26, 2023.
In May 2022, the United States partnered with the United Kingdom and the European Union (EU) to create the Atrocity Crimes Advisory Group (ACA), which is providing expert advice to Ukraine’s Office of the Prosecutor General in the prosecution of war crimes and other atrocities. That same month, the Conflict Observatory program launched with Department of State support; since then, through independent analysis, it has identified, tracked, and documented possible atrocities committed by Russia’s forces in Ukraine using geospatial technologies and open-source reporting. The program is providing information directly to a range of national and international investigations, including the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s Moscow Mechanism process, and Ukraine’s Office of the Prosecutor General. The Department of State continues to fund justice, accountability, and other efforts, which have led to the identification of the whereabouts of more than 100 Ukrainians believed to be prisoners of war held in Russia’s territory and the exhumation of 1,116 civilians, including 31 children, from mass graves in areas liberated by Ukraine’s forces. Department of State funding includes support to the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, which to date has documented more than 102 reports of conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) since the beginning of the war.
In June 2022, Attorney General Garland announced the creation of a new War Crimes Accountability Team, which is based in the Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section (HRSP) within the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Criminal Division. The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) International Human Rights Unit and the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) continue to work closely with HRSP in support of this initiative. DOJ’s International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program (ICITAP) continues to train and mentor Ukrainian law enforcement in tactical and criminal investigative techniques, forensics, and evidence collection.
USAID’s Human Rights in Action program significantly expanded its long-term efforts to document atrocities and abuses of human rights. Having supported the documentation of more than 30,000 instances of allegations of war crimes in Ukraine since February 2022, these efforts also focused on ensuring accountability, including through more than 70 impact litigation cases against the Russian Federation in international and regional courts. USAID’s Justice for All (J4A) program continues to support Ukraine’s legal system by building the capacity of judges, defense lawyers, and the judicial administration to adjudicate war crimes in domestic courts. J4A also contributed to drafting and advocacy efforts leading to the adoption of a UN resolution to establish a register and a claims commission for compensation for war victims.
The United States continues to work with allies and partners to call on the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to end crimes against humanity and genocide in Xinjiang. In October 2022, the United States and 49 other countries released a joint statement in the UN General Assembly Third Committee on the human rights situation in Xinjiang, calling on the PRC to uphold its international human rights obligations and implement the recommendations of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. The United States remains engaged in ongoing efforts to prevent refoulement to the PRC of Uyghurs and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups who fled persecution or torture in Xinjiang. In June 2022, the Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force published the Strategy to Prevent the Importation of Goods Mined, Produced, or Manufactured with Forced Labor in the People’s Republic of China. Since then, DHS’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has stopped 3,237 shipments, valued at $961 million, in fiscal years (FYs) 2022 and 2023 to date. CBP denied 424 shipments, worth $23.82 million, because they were made by Uyghur forced labor. CBP is still holding 1,723 shipments, valued at $545 million, pending action by importers or CBP.
On March 20, 2023, Secretary Blinken determined that members of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF), Eritrean Defense Forces (EDF), Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) forces, and Amhara forces committed war crimes during the conflict in northern Ethiopia. Members of the ENDF, EDF, and Amhara forces also committed crimes against humanity, including murder, rape and other forms of sexual violence, and persecution. Members of the Amhara forces also committed the crime against humanity of deportation or forcible transfer and committed ethnic cleansing in western Tigray. The United States welcomed the African Union Monitoring, Verification, and Compliance Mission and progress towards implementation of the November 2022 Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and continues to call on the parties to ensure the protection of civilians, respect human rights, allow unhindered access for international human rights monitors, and support accountability for atrocities. At the UN Human Rights Council (HRC), the United States voted for renewal of the mandate of the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia.
USAID continued to support a variety of programs in Ethiopia, including funding 47 investigations in areas where human rights abuses are prevalent. The Department of State and USAID funded civil society-led justice and accountability efforts in relation to the conflict in northern Ethiopia. The United States continues to call on the Ethiopian government and all involved in the conflict to commit to a comprehensive, inclusive, and transparent transitional justice process. To this end, the Department of State has provided expert guidance to Ethiopian officials, including through participation in a March 2023 consultation with international experts on transitional justice.
The United States remained deeply concerned about South Sudan’s rampant subnational violence, human rights violations and impunity for perpetrators, lack of progress on political reforms, and shrinking civic space. The United States ended assistance for peace process monitoring mechanisms, effective in July 2022, because of South Sudanese leaders’ failure to follow through on commitments to the peace process. In September 2022, the United States, along with the United Kingdom, Norway, and the EU, did not support the two-year extension of the transitional government. The United States expressed its concern that the Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (RTGoNU) chose not to take the necessary steps to implement the peace process and jointly called upon the RTGoNU to immediately demonstrate significant progress on the roadmap for implementation of the outstanding elements of the 2018 Revitalized Peace Agreement and to expand political and civic space to ensure the voices of the South Sudanese people, including those who hold opposing views, are consistently heard throughout the implementation of the roadmap. In December 2022, in response to an escalation of violence in Upper Nile and Jonglei states, the United States, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the EU jointly called on all sides to abide by the conditions in the 2018 Revitalized Peace Agreement. The United States continues to provide critical foreign assistance to address underlying grievances that drive conflict and to support reconciliation at the local level, including Department of State programming on transitional justice and local atrocity prevention and USAID programming on peacebuilding, conflict mitigation, and social cohesion. These activities include promoting mediation and dialogues in conflict hotspots and supporting trauma awareness mechanisms that help break cycles of violence.
In the wake of conflict that broke out in Sudan on April 15, 2023, between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the Rapid Support Forces, there have been ongoing reports of large-scale human rights abuses and violations of international law, including CRSV and attacks on medical facilities. The United States has condemned the violence at the highest levels and has urged both sides, alongside international partners, to cease hostilities and allow unhindered humanitarian access, prevent attacks on civilians and humanitarian workers, and stop the seizure and looting of hospitals and humanitarian facilities and assets. Recognizing the pattern of mass atrocities in Sudan’s past, the United States supported a range of atrocity prevention, response, and recovery-focused initiatives prior to the recent eruption of violent conflict. USAID supported efforts to promote peace between communities and across Sudan, as well as diverse local organizations working on documentation of human rights abuses and human rights advocacy. The Department of State is funding justice and accountability-focused documentation of human rights abuses, as well as an early warning network, risk mitigation planning, and social cohesion programming in Darfur and the border area near the Central African Republic. The United States will continue to monitor and seek to prevent and respond to future human rights abuses.
Since the February 2021 military coup d’état, Burma regime security forces have continued to commit atrocities and other human rights abuses against the people of Burma, which reportedly include torture, mass village burnings, CRSV, and arbitrary detention. The United States remains committed to advancing civilian protection, justice, and accountability for Rohingya and all the people of Burma. The United States has provided significant funding to the UN Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar (IIMM) for open-source investigations and has shared information with the IIMM in connection with atrocities committed against Rohingya. In September 2022, the Department of State announced that it provided $1 million in additional funding for the IIMM to support victims and witnesses of abuses by the regime. The Department of State and USAID are also funding emergency support to human rights defenders, psychosocial support to survivors of trauma, and the documentation and investigation of atrocities and human rights abuses for transitional justice purposes. As of March 2023, the United States had sanctioned 82 individuals and 38 entities to deprive the regime of the means to perpetuate its violence.
The United States continues to work with partners to press the Taliban to respect its public commitments with regard to respecting the human rights of all Afghans, including women, girls, and members of minority groups, and promoting an independent and sustainable economy. On October 11, 2022, Secretary Blinken announced a policy under Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA) section 212(a)(3)(C) to restrict the issuance of visas to current or former Taliban members, members of non-state security groups, and other individuals believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, repressing women and girls in Afghanistan through restrictive policies and violence.
In April 2023, the United States worked with UN Security Council members on a resolution condemning the Taliban’s decision to ban Afghan women from working for the UN and calling for the swift reversal of policies and practices restricting women and girls’ enjoyment of their human rights and fundamental freedoms. At the UN HRC in October 2022, the United States supported a resolution to extend the mandate of the special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan and to include in the special rapporteur’s mandate a child’s rights perspective and the responsibility to document and preserve information relating to human rights abuses. In July 2022, the United States supported a UN HRC resolution requesting that the special rapporteur prepare a report on the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan. On International Women’s Day, the United States led an effort on a joint ministerial statement, joined by 28 countries and the EU, calling attention to the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, recognizing the courage of Afghan women and girls, and urging the Taliban to respect the human rights of all individuals in Afghanistan. During the March 2023 UN Commission on the Status of Women session, the United States helped deliver a joint statement on behalf of 72 signatories, including the EU, expressing concern about the weakening of respect for the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan.
Notable Milestones toward Accountability for Past Atrocities
U.S. law enforcement continued to hold perpetrators of atrocities accountable. In May 2022, DOJ brought immigration fraud charges against an individual alleged to have served as a general in a rebel group, due to failure to disclose involvement in the recruitment or use of child soldiers in Liberia. In addition, since May 2022, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ Field Operations Directorate had one high-profile Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness case where the applicant was removed from the United States due to involvement in atrocities during the Liberian civil war in the 1990s. DOJ is also continuing progress on a case in Colorado where an individual faces torture charges stemming from actions in The Gambia in 2006.
The United States seeks to promote accountability in Iraq for atrocity crimes committed by ISIS members. The Department of State continues to support, including through more than $13 million in funding, the UN Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Da’esh (ISIS) (UNITAD) in its efforts to collect, preserve, and store evidence of acts that may amount to war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide in Iraq.
In March 2021, Iraq’s Parliament passed the landmark Yezidi Survivors Law to provide reparation and psychosocial support to Iraqi survivors of ISIS atrocities. The first reparations were disbursed under the law in March 2023, but significant hurdles to the law’s full implementation remain. In May 2022, a Department of State-funded UNITAD program convened the Second High-Level Conference on the Interfaith Statement on the Victims and Survivors of ISIS/Da’esh, where more than 40 faith leaders exchanged strategies for seeking justice and working together to prevent future atrocities. The Department of State also provided funding to UN Habitat in Iraq, which has registered more than 14,500 housing, land, and property claims of Yezidi families. UN Habitat and the Iraqi Ministry of Justice worked closely with the Iraqi Prime Minister’s Office on a legal decree to formalize the recognition of Yezidi community members’ land rights and upgrade occupancy certificates to full land ownership titles, which the Iraqi Council of Ministers issued in December 2022, granting Yezidis ownership of their residential homes and lands in Sinjar.
The United States continues to strongly support Colombia’s 2016 Peace Accord and its transitional justice mechanisms. USAID provided $7 million to support the Truth Commission’s work to collect 21,000 individual testimonies; analyze 584 reports from government and civil society; and convene nearly 2,000 meetings with former combatants, paramilitary forces, and the government over its three-and-a-half-year mandate. The Truth Commission published its final report in June 2022. On March 8, 2023, the Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) charged former members of the demobilized FARC with war crimes and crimes against humanity for carrying out attacks on indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities. USAID’s work with the JEP accelerated cases, strengthened protection for witnesses, and increased victims’ participation in the peace process across the country, including through victims’ organizations. The Department of State provided $1 million to support the JEP’s ability to prosecute crimes, including those involving sexual violence, and to reach marginalized communities and ensure they can participate meaningfully in the country’s transitional justice processes. Pursuant to Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, the United States publicly designated three former military officials who failed to genuinely participate in the JEP for their involvement in gross human rights violations during Colombia’s internal armed conflict. That action rendered those individuals and their immediate family members ineligible for entry into the United States. In addition to providing more than $5.1 million for Peace Accord implementation monitoring since 2016, the Department of State has provided more than $2.2 million since 2020 for local peace councils to help partners build broader state presence, expand grassroots capacity for stabilization, and build stronger connections between local governments and the national government.
Addressing Gender-Based Violence as an Atrocity Risk
In November 2022, President Biden signed the Presidential Memorandum on Promoting Accountability for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence, which commits the U.S. government to fully exercising existing authorities to promote justice and accountability for acts of CRSV and broadening engagement with partners to encourage accountability through all available measures – including legal, policy, diplomatic, and financial tools – to deter future violence. The 2022 U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally recognizes that gender-based violence, including CRSV, can be an early warning sign for the onset of atrocities and an atrocity itself. Impunity for CRSV is widespread, particularly in contexts where deep-rooted gender inequalities and power imbalances inhibit investigations and prosecutions of sexual and gender-based crimes. The APTF has worked to integrate an inclusive gender lens into atrocity prevention efforts, including by highlighting the impact of gender within the ARAF.
Furthering efforts to address gender-related atrocity risk, on February 6, 2023, the FBI, DOJ, and DHS/HSI issued a press release recognizing the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), reiterating that FGM is a federal crime and, depending on immigration status, may result in removal from the United States and highlighting U.S. efforts to protect women and girls who have been subject to or are at risk of this form of gender-based violence.
Current Efforts by Sector
The United States uses programmatic, diplomatic, and economic tools to prevent and respond to atrocities. During FY 2022, the Department of State, the Department of Defense (DoD), DHS, and USAID attributed $101.6 million to atrocity prevention programs, including $2.5 million in Economic Support Funds (ESF) and $2.5 million in International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement (INCLE) funds earmarked for atrocity prevention.
Diplomacy and Foreign Assistance
Over the last fiscal year, the Department of State utilized ESF, including the ESF funds noted above as designated for atrocity prevention, to support programming focused on atrocity prevention, response, and recovery in South and Southeast Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and the Western Hemisphere. In Sub-Saharan Africa, Department of State programs have bolstered the ability of targeted populations to protect themselves through the operation of community-based early warning and early response systems, as well as to propose solutions to key actors responsible for responding to atrocity risks in atrocity hot spots. Some of the programs have also utilized micro grants to enable local peace initiatives that, among other things, build social cohesion through friendly sports matches and video and radio content, engage potential perpetrators to address motivations and means, contribute to trauma awareness, and establish safe spaces for survivors of atrocities and other abuses, including sexual and gender-based violence. Department of State programs also support atrocity prevention through work with diverse groups to carry out community-based truth telling, remembrance, and education-focused efforts as a means of recovering from and preventing mass atrocities. Funding has also supported criminal accountability for atrocities, such as grants to assist the Special Criminal Court in the Central African Republic. Department of State programs in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and the Middle East have also provided local partners with guidelines on providing psychological first aid to first responders and frontline workers, built the capacity of local partners to carry out their efforts in a trauma-informed way, and established referral networks for survivors.
Department of State programs in several of the locations noted above, including in the Middle East, Asia, and Sub-Saharan Africa, have continued to improve and expand the rigorous documentation and investigation of atrocities. Program funds have facilitated the secure preservation, analysis, and sharing of this documentation with justice actors to support prosecutions and other legal proceedings and to inform advocacy around proposed survivor-centered transitional justice measures in the aftermath of atrocities. For instance, in an Asian country, a Department of State-funded program carried out atrocity-related documentation missions across numerous refugee camps, which led to the collection and secure storage of 369 interview testimonies. The same program also collected 250 life stories from local women, men, and children to be preserved as an oral archive to memorialize past atrocities and raise awareness to prevent recurrence.
In Latin America, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia, Department of State programs also provided multidisciplinary forensic anthropology assistance to accelerate the identification of the missing and disappeared and address the needs and priorities of families to respond to and recover from atrocities by uncovering truth, promoting justice, and supporting memorialization.
The Department of State used INCLE funds to enhance the capacity of criminal justice systems to prevent and address atrocity crimes, including through training for law enforcement and justice sector professionals on identifying and responding to early warning signs of potential atrocities. INCLE funds also mitigated risk through support for election security programming for civil society and law enforcement in Kenya, which helped ensure the August 2022 national elections remained peaceful.
USAID implemented programming to identify and respond to early warning of atrocity risks; document human rights abuses; address hate speech and disinformation; and promote peacebuilding, conflict mitigation, and social cohesion. For example, programming in the Democratic Republic of the Congo identified four situations directly tied to incidents of hate speech and ethnic stereotypes that polarize and incite violence and then produced eight radio programs to sensitize the community to atrocity prevention and effective conflict resolution approaches.
In October 2022, Secretary Blinken announced a new visa restriction policy under section 212(a)(3)(C) of the INA to cover Haitian officials and others involved in the operation of street gangs and other Haitian criminal organizations. In addition, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution co-authored by the United States and Mexico to establish a new UN sanctions regime in Haiti. The United States is engaged in regular discussions with international partners, the Haitian government, civil society, and the private sector on how the international community might best support the Haitian people in reestablishing democratic order and stability.
Defense and Security
In FY 2022, DoD notified Congress of its planned spending of $77.5 million to improve security sector governance and management, including through training on topics such as the law of war and democratic oversight. On February 23, 2023, the Biden Administration published the U.S. Conventional Arms Transfer Policy, which states that the United States will not authorize arms transfers if the United States assesses that it is more likely than not that the arms to be transferred will be used by the recipient to commit, facilitate the commission of, or aggravate risks that the recipient will commit genocide, crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, or other serious violations of international humanitarian or human rights law. The expanded ability to incorporate such risks into the decision-making process on arms transfers will help the U.S. government’s efforts to prevent a new onset of atrocities in at-risk countries.
The United States acted to support accountability for past atrocities and prevent perpetrators of such atrocities from seeking haven in the United States. On January 5, 2023, President Biden signed the Justice for Victims of War Crimes Act, which extends U.S. criminal jurisdiction to cover individuals found in the United States who committed war crimes in other countries, regardless of the nationality of the victim or offender. The legislation also removed the statute of limitations for certain war crimes.
DHS/HSI reported more than 160 active investigations of individuals suspected of being involved in human rights abuses, is pursuing 1,700 leads and removal cases involving individuals from 95 countries suspected of being involved in human rights violations or abuses, and prevented eight such individuals from entering the United States. DOJ continued to litigate cases involving human rights abuses or war crimes in the Balkans, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Haiti, Iraq, and Liberia, among other countries. Additionally, DOJ, funded through interagency agreements between the Department of State and DOJ’s Criminal Division’s Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance, and Training and ICITAP, provides training and technical assistance to countries to prevent, investigate, and prosecute crimes involving human rights abuses. As part of its work on transnational repression, the FBI has translated threat intimidation guides into 65 languages to reach a broad audience of potential victims of foreign government repression and atrocities.
Atrocity Prevention Training
Approximately 346 U.S. government employees received atrocity prevention training during the reporting period. This number includes domestic and overseas staff, including 105 participants from the Department of State, 132 from USAID, 25 from DHS/HSI, five from DOJ, four from the FBI, two from DoD, one from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and one from the Office of Management and Budget. Of those trained, 87 were Foreign Service officers from the Department of State and USAID. An atrocity prevention module was included in the Foreign Service Institute’s course titled, “Promoting Gender Equality to Promote Foreign Policy,” which had 53 participants during the reporting period.
Internationally, the Department of State led atrocity prevention training for 22 diplomats from likeminded countries. DoD incorporated atrocity prevention and response themes into its rule of law seminars and institutional capacity building programming. DHS/HSI trained 75 African law enforcement and justice officials attending atrocity prevention-related training at the Department of State’s International Law Enforcement Academy in Botswana. DHS/HSI also trained 1,100 individuals, including law enforcement officers, congressional staff, and community members, on FGM during the reporting period to support awareness-raising, prevention, and enforcement. The FBI trained 52 employees on FGM during the reporting period. DOJ and the FBI also provided training to foreign partners on atrocity prevention, response, and recovery.
Multilateral and External Engagement
After resuming membership in the UN HRC in 2022, the United States co-sponsored resolutions and joined statements condemning human rights abuses in Afghanistan, Belarus, Burma, Burundi, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Libya, Nicaragua, the PRC, Russia, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Sudan, Ukraine, and Venezuela. The United States supported an HRC resolution during a November 2022 special session to establish the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Iran, which is charged with investigating alleged human rights violations related to the protests that began in September 2022, especially with respect to women and children. The United States supported the creation and/or renewal of the mandates for HRC mechanisms focused on Afghanistan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Nicaragua, Russia, Sudan, Syria, and Ukraine. The United States also co-sponsored resolutions and joint statements on thematic issues, including transitional justice, the responsibility to protect, and women and girls, in all their diversity, in the context of atrocities. The Department of State exchanged best practices for early warning methodology and atrocity prevention frameworks with likeminded partners through the International Atrocity Prevention Working Group (IAPWG). In 2022, the IAPWG held its first principal-level engagement with civil society, hosted by the United States.
DHS/HSI joined law enforcement counterparts at multilateral meetings of the EU Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation and the EU Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation’s Genocide Network, which are dedicated to supporting national authorities’ efforts to investigate and prosecute atrocities.
In the coming year, the APTF, in consultation with Congress, NGOs, and civil society, as appropriate, will continue to implement the SAPRA and the 2022 recommendations, as well as prioritize the following:
- Continue to integrate U.S. strategies on gender equity and equality; preventing and responding to gender-based violence; women, peace, and security; atrocity prevention; and conflict prevention and stabilization to build a holistic approach for preventing mass atrocities.
- Continue to implement the Presidential Memorandum on Promoting Accountability for Conflict-Related Sexual Violence.
- Support the implementation of the strategies developed to reduce atrocity risk in priority prevention countries and assess the impact in disrupting drivers of risk.
- Work toward developing global data on interventions related to atrocity prevention.
- Develop approaches for assessing and mitigating the risk of social media as a potential driver of mass atrocities.
- Explore ways to deepen multilateral cooperation on atrocity prevention and response.