Letter to Congressional Leaders on Lifting and Modifying Measures With Respect to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)
Dear Mr. Speaker: (Dear Mr. President:)
Pursuant to section 204(b) of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, 50 U.S.C. 1703(b) (IEEPA) and section 301 of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. 1631, I hereby report that I have exercised my statutory authority to take additional actions with respect to the national emergency described and declared in Executive Order 13088 of June 9, 1998, and related to the actions and policies of the Governments of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) (the "FRY (S&M)") and the Republic of Serbia with respect to Kosovo. I have issued a new Executive Order to lift, with respect to future transactions, the economic sanctions imposed pursuant to Executive Order 13088 and expanded by Executive Order 13121 of April 30, 1999, except for those sanctions targeted against members and supporters of the former Milosevic regime. These actions are also taken in furtherance of United Nations Security Council Resolution 827 of May 25, 1993, and subsequent resolutions.
The Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is authorized to issue regulations in exercise of my authorities under IEEPA and the United Nations Participation Act, 22 U.S.C. 287c, to implement measures lifting and modifying the economic sanctions imposed pursuant to Executive Order 13088. Property blocked pursuant to Executive Order 13088 before the effective date of the new Executive Order will continue to be blocked pending the resolution of successor state and other issues. All Federal agencies are also directed to take actions within their statutory authority to carry out the provisions of the new Executive Order. In addition to the persons I have identified in the annex to the new Executive Order, the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State, is to identify certain other persons whose property and interests in property will be blocked pursuant to the order and with respect to whose property interests certain transactions or dealings by U.S. persons will be prohibited. The Secretary of the Treasury, again in consultation with the Secretary of State, is also authorized to remove any person from the annex to the order. In order to ensure the fullest implementation of the Executive Order, the Secretary of State will take steps to identify for appropriate consideration by the Secretary of the Treasury persons potentially covered by the criteria set forth in the order, which includes individuals who may have sought or may be seeking, through repressive measures or otherwise, to exercise illegitimate control over FRY (S&M) political institutions or economic resources.
I am enclosing a copy of the Executive Order I have issued. The order was effective at 12:01 a.m. eastern standard time on January 19, 2001.
I have authorized these measures in response to the recent positive developments in the FRY (S&M) and, notwithstanding those developments, the unusual and extraordinary threat that remains to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. I found in Executive Order 13088 that the actions and policies of the Governments of the FRY (S&M) and the Republic of Serbia with respect to Kosovo, by promoting ethnic conflict and human suffering, threatened to destabilize the countries of the region and to disrupt progress in the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina in implementing the Dayton peace agreement, and therefore constituted an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. I declared a national emergency to deal with that threat and ordered that economic sanctions be imposed with respect to those governments. I issued Executive Order 13121 in response to the continuing human rights and humanitarian crises in Kosovo. That order revised and substantially expanded the sanctions imposed pursuant to Executive Order 13088.
On September 24, 2000, the people of the FRY (S&M) displayed extraordinary courage and principle when they elected Vojislav Kostunica to be their president. The peaceful democratic transition begun by President Kostunica and the people of the FRY (S&M) opens the prospect of the FRY (S&M)'s rejoining fully the international community and merits lifting, with respect to future transactions, the economic sanctions imposed pursuant to Executive Orders 13088 and 13121. Notwithstanding these positive developments, steps must still be taken to support the ongoing efforts of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and to continue to counter the threat that remains with respect to stability in the Balkan region and the full implementation of the Dayton peace agreement.
In resolution 827 and subsequent resolutions, the United Nations Security Council has called upon all states to cooperate fully with the ICTY. In this connection, the ICTY has issued an order that states determine whether Slobodan Milosevic and four other indicted persons have assets located in their territories and, if any such assets are found, adopt provisional measures to freeze those assets.
Additionally, Slobodan Milosevic and other persons currently or subsequently under open indictment by the ICTY must be held fully accountable for the violence and atrocities they unleashed in the Balkans over the past decade, and they must be denied access to the economic and other means that would support their further repressing democracy or promoting or perpetrating further human rights abuses. The same holds true for those persons assisting the indictees and other blocked persons in their illicit activities and those persons who, through repressive measures or otherwise, illegitimately exercise control over FRY (S&M) political institutions and economic resources and enterprises under the sponsorship of Slobodan Milosevic and his close associates.
We heartily applaud the peaceful democratic transition that is underway in the FRY (S&M) and we pledge to support President Kostunica and other newly elected leaders as they work to build a truly democratic society. Unfortunately, however, we must recognize the past and present capacity of Slobodan Milosevic and other indicted war criminals and their close associates or other persons to foment ethnic conflict, repress democracy, and promote or perpetrate further human rights abuses. This capacity continues to threaten the stability of the Balkan region and the full implementation of the Dayton peace agreement and, therefore, still constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. The actions we are taking will assist the FRY (S&M) in ending its isolation and returning fully to the international community. They also express our condemnation of the violence and atrocities that have plagued the Balkan region for the past decade and will help prevent human rights abuses in the future.
WILLIAM J. CLINTON
NOTE: Letters were sent to J. Dennis Hastert, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Albert Gore, Jr., President of the Senate. An original was not available for verification of the content of this letter. The Executive order of January 17 is listed in Appendix D at the end of this volume.
William J. Clinton, Letter to Congressional Leaders on Lifting and Modifying Measures With Respect to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/228012