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[liberationtech] Internet/IB Mandates in the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012

Collin Anderson collin at
Mon Jul 30 21:27:08 PDT 2012

There is not much in the way of support for Syria; as you noted, only more
regulation/export controls, the act codifies GHRAVITY in §411, and expounds
on the principles more deeply on §703(b)(2)(D) and §704.

On Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 11:50 PM, Andrew Lewis <andrew at> wrote:

> Looking at the whole document revels that Syria is included, but only to
> add more sanctions. Does anyone on list know of any movement to add
> exceptions similar to the ones for Iran that will allow anti-censorship
> technologies or aid to go towards Syria?
> Or am I mistaken and those roadblocks have been already overcome? I am
> genuinely not up to date on what the sanctions on Syria entail at this
> point in time.
> -Andrew
> On Jul 30, 2012, at 10:46 PM, Collin Anderson wrote:
> Libtech,
> Foreign Policy released a copy of the compromise version of the
> upcoming Johnson/Ros-Lehtinen sanctions bill; expected to be legislatively
> passed in the next week. In true Congressional form, quite a portion of the
> mandates involve 'Internet Freedom' agenda items -- namely export
> regulation on sensitive technology, expanding content availability,
> International Broadcasting, and satellite jamming.
> *
> *
> *This is important.* The State and Treasury Department will be tasked
> with addressing issues of 'dual use technologies' and digital security.
> While I appreciate the addition of §414(7)(B) for clarifying sanctions
> regulations, Congress has a part to play in ensuring clarity on the
> political boundaries of such exports.
> [PDF]
> *(Introduction)*
> It is the sense of Congress that the goal of compelling Iran to abandon
>> efforts to acquire a nuclear weapons capability and other threatening
>> activities can be effectively achieved through a comprehensive policy
>> ... [a]mong the economic measures to be taken are—
> (4) a focus on countering Iran’s efforts to evade sanctions, including—
> (A) the activities of telecommunications, Internet, and satellite service
>> providers, in and outside of Iran, to ensure that such providers are not
>> participating in or facilitating, directly or indirectly, the evasion of
>> the sanctions regime with respect to Iran or violations of the human rights
>> of the people of Iran;
>> The Secretary of State shall—
> (1) not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act,
>> issue guidelines to further describe the technologies that may be
>> considered ‘‘sensitive technology’’ for purposes of section 106 of the
>> Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010
>> (22 U.S.C. 8515), with special attention to new forms of sophisticated
>> jamming, monitoring, and surveillance technology relating to mobile
>> telecommunications and the Internet, and publish those guidelines in the
>> Federal Register;
> (2) determine the types of technologies that enable any indigenous
>> capabilities that Iran has to disrupt and monitor information and
>> communications in that country, and consider adding descriptions of those
>> items to the guidelines; and
> (3) periodically review, but in no case less than once each year, the
>> guidelines and, if necessary, amend the guidelines on the basis of
>> technological developments and new information regarding transfers of
>> technologies to Iran and the development of Iran’s indigenous capabilities
>> to disrupt and monitor information and communications in Iran.
> Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the
>> Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of the Treasury and
>> the heads of other Federal agencies, as appropriate, shall submit to the
>> appropriate congressional committees a comprehensive strategy to—
>  (1) assist the people of Iran to produce, access, and share information
>> freely and safely via the Internet, including in Farsi and regional
>> languages;
> (2) support the development of counter-censorship technologies that enable
>> the citizens of Iran to undertake Internet activities without
>> interference from the Government of Iran;
>  (3) increase the capabilities and availability of secure mobile and other
>> communications through connective technology among human rights and
>> democracy activists in Iran;
>  (4) provide resources for digital safety training for media and academic
>> and civil society organizations in Iran;
> (5) provide accurate and substantive Internet content in local languages
>> in Iran;
>  (6) increase emergency resources for the most vulnerable human rights
>> advocates seeking to organize, share information, and support human
>> rights in Iran;
> (7) expand surrogate radio, television, live stream, and social network
>> communications inside Iran, including—
>  (A) by expanding Voice of America’s Persian News Network and Radio Free
>> Europe/Radio Liberty’s Radio Farda to provide hourly live news update
>> programming and breaking news coverage capability 24 hours a day and 7 days
>> a week; and
>  (B) by assisting telecommunications and software companies that are
>> United States persons to comply with the export licensing requirements of
>> the United States for the purpose of expanding such communications inside
>> Iran;
>  (8) expand activities to safely assist and train human rights, civil
>> society, and democracy activists in Iran to operate effectively and
>> securely;
> (9) identify and utilize all available resources to overcome attempts by
>> the Government of Iran to jam or otherwise deny international satellite
>> broadcasting signals;
>  (10) expand worldwide United States embassy and consulate programming for
>> and outreach to Iranian dissident communities;
> (11) expand access to proxy servers for democacy activists in Iran; and
>  (12) discourage telecommunications and software companies from
>> facilitating Internet censorship by the Government of Iran.
> Cordially,
> Collin
> --
> *Collin David Anderson*
> | @cda | Washington, D.C.
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*Collin David Anderson* | @cda | Washington, D.C.
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