FACT SHEET: The Clinton Administration: Promoting Human Rights
                             December 6, 2000

Promoting human rights at home and abroad has been a central policy
objective of the Clinton Administration.  President Clinton?s leadership
has contributed to the growth of democracy and human rights worldwide.

The Clinton Administration:

   Led the successful international effort to create the Office of the
   United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

   Issued an Executive Order strengthening  implementation of human rights
   treaties, signed into law the Torture Victims Relief Act, and
   substantially increased our annual contribution to the United Nations
   fund for torture victims.

   Helped secure China?s signature of the International Covenants on Civil
   and Political Rights and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and
   vigorously pressed for progress on prisoner releases, political rights,
   religious freedom and the rule of law in the PRC.

   Cosponsored resolutions at the United Nations Human Rights Commission
   calling on China, Cuba, Russia, Sudan, Iran, Iraq and the countries of
   the former Yugoslavia, among others, to improve human rights practices.

Advancing Democracy Worldwide
   Led effort on the Dayton Agreement to end the war in Bosnia, led a
   successful multilateral effort to reverse the ?ethnic cleansing? in
   Kosovo, and successfully aided the Serbian democratic movement in
   bringing an end to the regime of Slobodan Milosevic.
   Pressed for and consistently supported the democratic transition in
   Indonesia, as well as East Timor?s historic move toward independence.
   Led an international coalition to restore the elected Government of
   Haiti and promoted free and fair elections throughout the Americas where
   every country but one ? Cuba ? is now democratic.
   Supported peace  and the disarmament processes, provided support for
   free and fair elections, and gave critical assistance to historic
   democratic transformations.
   Continues to aid democracy advocates and pressure authoritarian
   governments around the world.
   Co-founded the Community of Democracies, a global alliance of democratic

Bringing War Criminals to Justice
   Led the effort to establish and is the biggest contributor to the
   International Criminal Tribunals for the Former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.
   Appointed the first Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues and
   established an early warning system to focus intelligence resources on
   and alert policy makers to situations that could potentially lead to
   genocide or mass atrocities.

Supporting Labor Rights and the Most Vulnerable Victims of Abuses
   Worked with corporations and non-governmental organizations through the
   ?No Sweat Initiative? to develop voluntary ethical codes of conduct to
   prevent the importation of products made in sweatshop conditions.
   Worked to combat child labor by contributing $30 million annually to the
   International Labor Organization?s International Program on the
   Elimination of Child Labor.
   Signed and ratified the International Labor Organization Convention on
   the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor in December 1999.
   President Clinton signed the Optional Protocol on the Involvement of
   Children in Armed Combat in June 2000.
   Led a concerted effort to combat trafficking in women and children.
   Proposed and successfully negotiated a UN protocol to combat trafficking
   in persons, to be signed next week, which, for the first time, will
   require countries to criminalize trafficking and will provide a
   framework for enhanced protection of and assistance to victims.   The
   President also signed into law the Victims of Trafficking and Violence
   Protection Act of 2000.

Promoting Religious Freedom Abroad
   Made religious freedom an integral part of its foreign policy, including
   by appointing the first-ever Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom
   Signed the International Religious Freedom Act, codifying many of the
   additional steps the Clinton Administration had taken on religious
   freedom, including the appointment the first Ambassador-at-Large for
   International Religious Freedom.
   Expanded reporting on the religious freedom in every country and
   designated Afghanistan, Burma, China, Iran, Iraq, Sudan and the
   Milosevic regime in Serbia as countries of particular concern for having
   engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious

Assisting refugees
   Assisted international refugees by reforming the asylum adjudication
   process, resulting in more expeditious granting of meritorious claims
   and fewer fraudulent ones.
   Advocated immigration legislation that addressed the circumstances of
   asylum seekers with longstanding ties to the United States from Central
   America (Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act of 1997) and Haiti
   (Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 1998), and then promulgated
   regulations to ameliorate disparities among nationalities covered by
   Issued new guidelines for the adjudication of asylum claims by women and
   children and adopted comprehensive procedures to claimants from being
   returned to face torture.  In addition, the United States has enhanced
   the rescue component of its refugee resettlement program, including
   increased resettlement efforts for refugees from Africa and the Near
   East, and continues to be the world?s most generous haven for refugees.

Promoting Human Rights at Home
   Fought for and won passage of the Hate Crimes Sentencing Enhancement
   Act, which proposed to increase penalties for hate crime as part of the
   1994 Crime Bill.
   Worked to end racial profiling by directing cabinet agencies to collect
   data on the race, ethnicity and gender of individuals subject to certain
   stops by federal law enforcement to help determine where and when racial
   profiling occurs.
   Signed into law in 1994 the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), landmark
   legislation to combat violence against women, and this year, worked
   closely with Congress to reauthorize it.
   Fought to protect the rights of all Americans, increasing funding for
   civil rights enforcement from $47 million in 1992 to $82 million in
   Ordered a comprehensive review of federal affirmative action programs,
   which concluded that affirmative action is still an effective and
   important tool to expand educational and economic opportunity to all
   Focused the nation?s attention and resources to help stop the rash of
   church burnings across the country, creating the National Church Arson
   Task Force in 1995 to investigate these crimes, prosecute those
   responsible and speed the rebuilding process.
   Took action to ensure fairness and equal participation in American
   society for legal immigrants.  In 1997 and 1998, restored disability,
   health and nutritional benefits for certain legal immigrants.

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