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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
January 16, 2009
To Suspend Entry as Immigrants and Nonimmigrants of Foreign Government Officials Responsible for Failing to Combat Trafficking in Persons
A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America
In order to foster greater resolve to address trafficking in persons (TIP), specifically in punishing acts of trafficking and providing protections to the victims of these crimes, consistent with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, as amended (the "Act") (22 U.S.C. 7101 et seq.), it is in the interests of the United States to restrict the international travel and to suspend entry into the United States, as immigrants or nonimmigrants, of certain senior government officials responsible for domestic law enforcement, justice, or labor affairs who have impeded their governments' antitrafficking efforts, have failed to implement their governments' antitrafficking laws and policies, or who otherwise bear responsibility for their governments' failures to take steps recognized internationally as appropriate to combat trafficking in persons, and whose governments have been ranked more than once as Tier 3 countries, which represent the worst anti-TIP performers, in the Department of State's annual Trafficking in Persons Report, and for which I have made a determination pursuant to section 110(d)(1)-(2) or (4) of the Act. The Act reflects international antitrafficking standards that guide efforts to eradicate this modern-day form of slavery around the world.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, including section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f), and section 301 of title 3, United States Code, hereby find that the unrestricted immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of persons described in section 1 of this proclamation would, except as provided for in sections 2 and 3 of this proclamation, be detrimental to the interests of the United States.
I therefore hereby proclaim that:
Section 1. The entry into the United States, as immigrants or nonimmigrants, of the following aliens is hereby suspended:
(a) Senior government officials -- defined as the heads of ministries or agencies and officials occupying positions within the two bureaucratic levels below those top positions -- responsible for domestic law enforcement, justice, or labor affairs who have impeded their governments' antitrafficking efforts, have failed to implement their governments' antitrafficking laws and policies, or who otherwise bear responsibility for their governments' failures to take steps recognized internationally as appropriate to combat trafficking in persons, and who are members of governments for which I have made a determination pursuant to section 110(d)(1)-(2) or (4) of the Act, in the current year and at least once in the preceding 3 years;
(b) The spouses of persons described in subsection (a) of this section.
Sec. 2. Section 1 of this proclamation shall not apply with respect to any person otherwise covered by section 1 where entry of such person would not be contrary to the interest of the United States.
Sec. 3. Persons covered by sections 1 or 2 of this proclamation shall be identified by the Secretary of State or the Secretary's designee, in his or her sole discretion, pursuant to such procedures as the Secretary may establish under section 5 of this proclamation.
Sec. 4. Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to derogate from United States Government obligations under applicable international agreements.
Sec. 5. The Secretary of State shall implement this proclamation pursuant to such procedures as the Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, may establish.
Sec. 6. This proclamation is effective immediately. It shall remain in effect until such time as the Secretary of State determines that it is no longer necessary and should be terminated, either in whole or in part. Any such determination by the Secretary of State shall be published in the Federal Register.
Sec. 7. This proclamation is not intended to, and does not, create any right, benefit, or privilege, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, instrumentalities, or entities, its officers or employees, or any other person.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this sixteenth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.
GEORGE W. BUSH
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