Letter to Congressional Leaders on Blocking Property With Respect to the Situation in Burma
Dear Madam Speaker: (Dear Madam President:)
Pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.) (IEEPA), I hereby report that I have issued an Executive Order (the "order") declaring a national emergency with respect to the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by the situation in Burma. The order responds to the February 1, 2021, coup in Burma by targeting the military and its leaders, their business interests, and their close family members. The order holds to account those responsible for unjustly arresting and detaining government leaders, politicians, human rights defenders, journalists, and religious leaders; rejecting the will of the people of Burma as expressed in elections held in November 2020; and undermining the country's democratic transition and the rule of law.
The order would authorize the blocking of property and interests in property of any foreign person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State:
- to operate in the defense sector of the Burmese economy or any other sector of the Burmese economy as may be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State;
- to be responsible for or complicit in, or to have directly or indirectly engaged or attempted to engage in, any of the following:
- actions or policies that undermine democratic processes or institutions in Burma;
- actions or policies that threaten the peace, security, or stability of Burma;
- actions or policies that prohibit, limit, or penalize the exercise of freedom of expression or assembly by people in Burma, or that limit access to print, online, or broadcast media in Burma; or
- the arbitrary detention or torture of any person in Burma or other serious human rights abuse in Burma;
- to be or have been a leader or official of:
- the military or security forces of Burma, or any successor entity to any of the foregoing;
- the Government of Burma on or after February 2, 2021;
- an entity that has, or whose members have, engaged in any activity described in subsection (a)(ii) of the order relating to the leader's or official's tenure; or
- an entity whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to the order as a result of activities related to the leader's or official's tenure;
- to be a political subdivision, agency, or instrumentality of the Government of Burma;
- to be a spouse or adult child of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to the order;
- to have materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to the order; or
- to be owned or controlled by, or to have acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, the military or security forces of Burma or any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to the order.
In addition, the order suspends entry into the United States of any noncitizen determined to meet one or more of the above criteria.
I have delegated to the Secretary of the Treasury the authority, in consultation with the Secretary of State, to take such actions, including the promulgation of rules and regulations, and to employ all powers granted to the President by IEEPA as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of the order. I have delegated to the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security, the authority to implement the order as it applies to visas. I have delegated to the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State, the authority to implement the order as it applies to the entry into the United States of noncitizens. All executive departments and agencies are directed to take all appropriate measures within their authority to carry out the provisions of the order.
I am enclosing a copy of the Executive Order I have issued.
JOSEPH R. BIDEN, JR.
NOTE: Identical letters were sent to Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Kamala D. Harris, President of the Senate. The letter was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on February 11. An original was not available for verification of the content of this letter.
Joseph R. Biden, Letter to Congressional Leaders on Blocking Property With Respect to the Situation in Burma Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/348014