Hostage Recovery Activities, 37129-37134 [2015-16122]

Download as PDF Vol. 80 Monday, No. 124 June 29, 2015 Part III The President mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 Executive Order 13698—Hostage Recovery Activities VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00001 Fmt 4717 Sfmt 4717 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4717 Sfmt 4717 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 37131 Presidential Documents Federal Register Vol. 80, No. 124 Monday, June 29, 2015 Title 3— Executive Order 13698 of June 24, 2015 The President Hostage Recovery Activities By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct as follows: Section 1. Purpose. The 21st century has witnessed a significant shift in hostage-takings by terrorist organizations and criminal groups abroad. Hostage-takers frequently operate in unstable environments that challenge the ability of the United States Government and its partners and allies to operate effectively. Increasingly, hostage-takers target private citizens—including journalists and aid workers—as well as Government officials. They also utilize increasingly sophisticated networks and tactics to derive financial, propaganda, and recruitment benefits from hostage-taking operations. The United States is committed to securing the safe recovery of U.S. nationals held hostage abroad and deterring future hostage-takings by denying hostagetakers any benefits from their actions. Because such hostage-takings pose unique challenges, the United States Government must be organized and work in a coordinated effort to use all instruments of national power to achieve these goals, consistent with the United States Government’s no concessions policy. Establishing a single United States Government operational body to coordinate all efforts for the recovery of U.S. nationals taken hostage abroad, with policy guidance coordinated through the National Security Council, will increase the likelihood of a successful recovery, allow for enhanced support to hostages and their families, promote foreign policy and national security interests abroad, and enhance the prospects of successful criminal prosecutions of hostage-takers. Dedicating a senior diplomatic representative to operate in support of this coordinated effort will further enhance the potential for the safe recovery of hostages. Sec. 2. Establishment and Responsibilities of the Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell. (a) The Attorney General, acting through the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), shall establish within the FBI for administrative purposes an interagency Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell (HRFC). (b) The following executive departments, agencies, and offices (agencies) shall participate in the HRFC: (i) the Department of State; (ii) the Department of the Treasury; (iii) the Department of Defense; (iv) the Department of Justice; (v) the Office of the Director of National Intelligence; (vi) the FBI; mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 (vii) the Central Intelligence Agency; and (viii) other agencies as the President or the Attorney General, acting through the Director of the FBI, from time to time, may designate. (c) The HRFC shall have a Director, who shall be a full-time senior officer or employee of, or detailed to, the FBI. The HRFC shall also have a Family Engagement Coordinator and other officers or employees as appropriate. The head of each participating agency shall, to the extent permitted by law, make available for assignment or detail to the HRFC such personnel as the Attorney General, acting through the Director of the FBI and after consultation with the head of the agency, may request. Such personnel VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4705 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 37132 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 124 / Monday, June 29, 2015 / Presidential Documents so detailed or assigned will operate utilizing the clearances provided by their respective agencies. (d) The HRFC shall coordinate efforts by participating agencies to ensure that all relevant information, expertise, and resources are brought to bear to secure the safe recovery of U.S. nationals held hostage abroad. The HRFC may also be tasked with coordinating the United States Government’s response to other hostage-takings occurring abroad in which the United States has a national interest, as specifically referred to the HRFC by the Deputies Committee, as established in Presidential Policy Directive 1 of February 13, 2009 (Organization of the National Security Council System), or any successor. Pursuant to policy guidance coordinated through the National Security Council, the HRFC shall: (i) identify and recommend hostage recovery options and strategies to the President through the National Security Council; (ii) coordinate efforts by participating agencies to ensure that information regarding hostage events, including potential recovery options and engagements with families and external actors (including foreign governments), is appropriately shared within the United States Government to facilitate a coordinated response to a hostage-taking; (iii) assess and track all hostage-takings of U.S. nationals abroad and provide regular reports to the President through the National Security Council on the status of such cases and any measures being taken toward the hostages’ safe recovery; (iv) provide a forum for intelligence sharing and, with the support of the Director of National Intelligence, coordinate the declassification of relevant information; (v) coordinate efforts by participating agencies to provide appropriate support and assistance to hostages and their families in a coordinated and consistent manner and to provide families with timely information regarding significant events in their cases; (vi) make recommendations to agencies in order to reduce the likelihood of U.S. nationals being taken hostage abroad and enhance United States Government preparation to maximize the probability of a favorable outcome following a hostage-taking; and mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 (vii) coordinate with agencies regarding congressional, media, and other public inquiries pertaining to hostage events. Sec. 3. Establishment of the Hostage Response Group. (a) There shall be a Hostage Response Group (HRG) chaired by the Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Counterterrorism, to be convened on a regular basis and as needed at the request of the National Security Council to further the safe recovery of U.S. nationals held abroad. The HRG may also be tasked with coordinating the United States Government response to other hostage-takings occurring abroad in which the United States has a national interest, as specifically referred to the HRFC by the Deputies Committee. (b) The regular members of the HRG shall include the Director of the HRFC, the HRFC’s Family Engagement Coordinator, and senior representatives from the Department of State, Department of the Treasury, Department of Defense, Department of Justice, FBI, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and other agencies as the President, from time to time, may designate. (c) The HRG, in support of the Deputies Committee chaired by the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, and consistent with the process outlined in Presidential Policy Directive 1 or any successor, shall: (i) identify and recommend hostage recovery options and strategies to the President through the National Security Council, as consistent with VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4705 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 124 / Monday, June 29, 2015 / Presidential Documents 37133 Presidential Policy Directive 30 of June 24, 2015 (U.S. Nationals Taken Hostage Abroad and Personnel Recovery Efforts); (ii) coordinate the development and implementation of U.S. hostage recovery policies, strategies, and procedures, consistent with the policies set forth in Presidential Policy Directive 30; (iii) receive regular updates from the HRFC on the status of U.S. nationals being held hostage abroad and measures being taken to effect the hostages’ safe recovery; (iv) coordinate the provision of policy guidance to the HRFC, including reviewing recovery options proposed by the HRFC and working to resolve disputes within the HRFC; and (v) where higher-level guidance is required, make recommendations to the Deputies Committee. Sec. 4. Establishment of the Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs. (a) There shall be a Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs (Special Envoy), appointed by the President, who shall report to the Secretary of State. (b) The Special Envoy shall: (i) lead diplomatic engagement on U.S. hostage policy; (ii) coordinate all diplomatic engagements in support of hostage recovery efforts, in coordination with the HRFC and consistent with policy guidance communicated through the HRG; (iii) coordinate with the HRFC proposals for diplomatic engagements and strategy in support of hostage recovery efforts; (iv) provide senior representation from the Special Envoy’s office to the HRFC and in the HRG; and mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 (v) in coordination with the HRFC as appropriate, coordinate diplomatic engagements regarding cases in which a foreign government confirms that it has detained a U.S. national but the United States Government regards such detention as unlawful or wrongful. Sec. 5. Reporting. (a) Within 180 days of the date of this order, the HRG shall provide a status report to the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism on the establishment of the HRFC and its implementation of policy guidance communicated through the HRG. (b) Within 1 year of the date of this order, the Director of the National Counterterrorism Center, in consultation with the Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, Attorney General, and Director of the FBI, shall provide a status report to the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism on the implementation of this order. That report shall be informed by consultation with stakeholders outside of the United States Government, including former hostages and hostages’ families, and shall, to the extent possible, be made available to the public. Sec. 6. Definition. For purposes of this order, the term ‘‘U.S. national’’ means: (a) a U.S. national as defined in either 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(22) or 8 U.S.C. 1408; or (b) a lawful permanent resident alien with significant ties to the United States. Sec. 7. General Provisions. (a) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. (b) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: (i) the authority granted by law, regulation, Executive Order, or Presidential Directive to any executive department, agency, or head thereof; or (ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00005 Fmt 4705 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 37134 Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 124 / Monday, June 29, 2015 / Presidential Documents (c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person. THE WHITE HOUSE, June 24, 2015. [FR Doc. 2015–16122 Filed 6–26–15; 11:15 am] VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:07 Jun 26, 2015 Jkt 235001 PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4705 Sfmt 4790 E:\FR\FM\29JNE0.SGM 29JNE0 OB#1.EPS</GPH> mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with E0 Billing code 3295–F5

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 80, Number 124 (Monday, June 29, 2015)]
[Presidential Documents]
[Pages 37129-37134]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2015-16122]



[[Page 37129]]

Vol. 80

Monday,

No. 124

June 29, 2015

Part III





The President





-----------------------------------------------------------------------



Executive Order 13698--Hostage Recovery Activities


                        Presidential Documents 



Federal Register / Vol. 80 , No. 124 / Monday, June 29, 2015 / 
Presidential Documents

___________________________________________________________________

Title 3--
The President

[[Page 37131]]

                Executive Order 13698 of June 24, 2015

                
Hostage Recovery Activities

                By the authority vested in me as President by the 
                Constitution and the laws of the United States of 
                America, I hereby direct as follows:

                Section 1. Purpose. The 21st century has witnessed a 
                significant shift in hostage-takings by terrorist 
                organizations and criminal groups abroad. Hostage-
                takers frequently operate in unstable environments that 
                challenge the ability of the United States Government 
                and its partners and allies to operate effectively. 
                Increasingly, hostage-takers target private citizens--
                including journalists and aid workers--as well as 
                Government officials. They also utilize increasingly 
                sophisticated networks and tactics to derive financial, 
                propaganda, and recruitment benefits from hostage-
                taking operations. The United States is committed to 
                securing the safe recovery of U.S. nationals held 
                hostage abroad and deterring future hostage-takings by 
                denying hostage-takers any benefits from their actions. 
                Because such hostage-takings pose unique challenges, 
                the United States Government must be organized and work 
                in a coordinated effort to use all instruments of 
                national power to achieve these goals, consistent with 
                the United States Government's no concessions policy. 
                Establishing a single United States Government 
                operational body to coordinate all efforts for the 
                recovery of U.S. nationals taken hostage abroad, with 
                policy guidance coordinated through the National 
                Security Council, will increase the likelihood of a 
                successful recovery, allow for enhanced support to 
                hostages and their families, promote foreign policy and 
                national security interests abroad, and enhance the 
                prospects of successful criminal prosecutions of 
                hostage-takers. Dedicating a senior diplomatic 
                representative to operate in support of this 
                coordinated effort will further enhance the potential 
                for the safe recovery of hostages.

                Sec. 2. Establishment and Responsibilities of the 
                Hostage Recovery Fusion Cell. (a) The Attorney General, 
                acting through the Director of the Federal Bureau of 
                Investigation (FBI), shall establish within the FBI for 
                administrative purposes an interagency Hostage Recovery 
                Fusion Cell (HRFC).

                    (b) The following executive departments, agencies, 
                and offices (agencies) shall participate in the HRFC:

(i) the Department of State;

(ii) the Department of the Treasury;

(iii) the Department of Defense;

(iv) the Department of Justice;

(v) the Office of the Director of National Intelligence;

(vi) the FBI;

(vii) the Central Intelligence Agency; and

(viii) other agencies as the President or the Attorney General, acting 
through the Director of the FBI, from time to time, may designate.

                    (c) The HRFC shall have a Director, who shall be a 
                full-time senior officer or employee of, or detailed 
                to, the FBI. The HRFC shall also have a Family 
                Engagement Coordinator and other officers or employees 
                as appropriate. The head of each participating agency 
                shall, to the extent permitted by law, make available 
                for assignment or detail to the HRFC such personnel as 
                the Attorney General, acting through the Director of 
                the FBI and after consultation with the head of the 
                agency, may request. Such personnel

[[Page 37132]]

                so detailed or assigned will operate utilizing the 
                clearances provided by their respective agencies.
                    (d) The HRFC shall coordinate efforts by 
                participating agencies to ensure that all relevant 
                information, expertise, and resources are brought to 
                bear to secure the safe recovery of U.S. nationals held 
                hostage abroad. The HRFC may also be tasked with 
                coordinating the United States Government's response to 
                other hostage-takings occurring abroad in which the 
                United States has a national interest, as specifically 
                referred to the HRFC by the Deputies Committee, as 
                established in Presidential Policy Directive 1 of 
                February 13, 2009 (Organization of the National 
                Security Council System), or any successor. Pursuant to 
                policy guidance coordinated through the National 
                Security Council, the HRFC shall:

(i) identify and recommend hostage recovery options and strategies to the 
President through the National Security Council;

(ii) coordinate efforts by participating agencies to ensure that 
information regarding hostage events, including potential recovery options 
and engagements with families and external actors (including foreign 
governments), is appropriately shared within the United States Government 
to facilitate a coordinated response to a hostage-taking;

(iii) assess and track all hostage-takings of U.S. nationals abroad and 
provide regular reports to the President through the National Security 
Council on the status of such cases and any measures being taken toward the 
hostages' safe recovery;

(iv) provide a forum for intelligence sharing and, with the support of the 
Director of National Intelligence, coordinate the declassification of 
relevant information;

(v) coordinate efforts by participating agencies to provide appropriate 
support and assistance to hostages and their families in a coordinated and 
consistent manner and to provide families with timely information regarding 
significant events in their cases;

(vi) make recommendations to agencies in order to reduce the likelihood of 
U.S. nationals being taken hostage abroad and enhance United States 
Government preparation to maximize the probability of a favorable outcome 
following a hostage-taking; and

(vii) coordinate with agencies regarding congressional, media, and other 
public inquiries pertaining to hostage events.

                Sec. 3. Establishment of the Hostage Response Group. 
                (a) There shall be a Hostage Response Group (HRG) 
                chaired by the Special Assistant to the President and 
                Senior Director for Counterterrorism, to be convened on 
                a regular basis and as needed at the request of the 
                National Security Council to further the safe recovery 
                of U.S. nationals held abroad. The HRG may also be 
                tasked with coordinating the United States Government 
                response to other hostage-takings occurring abroad in 
                which the United States has a national interest, as 
                specifically referred to the HRFC by the Deputies 
                Committee.

                    (b) The regular members of the HRG shall include 
                the Director of the HRFC, the HRFC's Family Engagement 
                Coordinator, and senior representatives from the 
                Department of State, Department of the Treasury, 
                Department of Defense, Department of Justice, FBI, 
                Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and 
                other agencies as the President, from time to time, may 
                designate.
                    (c) The HRG, in support of the Deputies Committee 
                chaired by the Assistant to the President for Homeland 
                Security and Counterterrorism, and consistent with the 
                process outlined in Presidential Policy Directive 1 or 
                any successor, shall:

(i) identify and recommend hostage recovery options and strategies to the 
President through the National Security Council, as consistent with

[[Page 37133]]

Presidential Policy Directive 30 of June 24, 2015 (U.S. Nationals Taken 
Hostage Abroad and Personnel Recovery Efforts);

(ii) coordinate the development and implementation of U.S. hostage recovery 
policies, strategies, and procedures, consistent with the policies set 
forth in Presidential Policy Directive 30;

(iii) receive regular updates from the HRFC on the status of U.S. nationals 
being held hostage abroad and measures being taken to effect the hostages' 
safe recovery;

(iv) coordinate the provision of policy guidance to the HRFC, including 
reviewing recovery options proposed by the HRFC and working to resolve 
disputes within the HRFC; and

(v) where higher-level guidance is required, make recommendations to the 
Deputies Committee.

                Sec. 4. Establishment of the Special Presidential Envoy 
                for Hostage Affairs. (a) There shall be a Special 
                Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs (Special Envoy), 
                appointed by the President, who shall report to the 
                Secretary of State.

                    (b) The Special Envoy shall:

(i) lead diplomatic engagement on U.S. hostage policy;

(ii) coordinate all diplomatic engagements in support of hostage recovery 
efforts, in coordination with the HRFC and consistent with policy guidance 
communicated through the HRG;

(iii) coordinate with the HRFC proposals for diplomatic engagements and 
strategy in support of hostage recovery efforts;

(iv) provide senior representation from the Special Envoy's office to the 
HRFC and in the HRG; and

(v) in coordination with the HRFC as appropriate, coordinate diplomatic 
engagements regarding cases in which a foreign government confirms that it 
has detained a U.S. national but the United States Government regards such 
detention as unlawful or wrongful.

                Sec. 5. Reporting. (a) Within 180 days of the date of 
                this order, the HRG shall provide a status report to 
                the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security 
                and Counterterrorism on the establishment of the HRFC 
                and its implementation of policy guidance communicated 
                through the HRG.

                    (b) Within 1 year of the date of this order, the 
                Director of the National Counterterrorism Center, in 
                consultation with the Secretary of State, Secretary of 
                Defense, Attorney General, and Director of the FBI, 
                shall provide a status report to the Assistant to the 
                President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism on 
                the implementation of this order. That report shall be 
                informed by consultation with stakeholders outside of 
                the United States Government, including former hostages 
                and hostages' families, and shall, to the extent 
                possible, be made available to the public.

                Sec. 6. Definition. For purposes of this order, the 
                term ``U.S. national'' means: (a) a U.S. national as 
                defined in either 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(22) or 8 U.S.C. 
                1408; or (b) a lawful permanent resident alien with 
                significant ties to the United States.

                Sec. 7. General Provisions. (a) This order shall be 
                implemented consistent with applicable law and subject 
                to the availability of appropriations.

                    (b) Nothing in this order shall be construed to 
                impair or otherwise affect:

(i) the authority granted by law, regulation, Executive Order, or 
Presidential Directive to any executive department, agency, or head 
thereof; or

(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget 
relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

[[Page 37134]]

                    (c) This order is not intended to, and does not, 
                create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, 
                enforceable at law or in equity by any party against 
                the United States, its departments, agencies, or 
                entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any 
                other person.
                
                
                    (Presidential Sig.)

                THE WHITE HOUSE,

                    June 24, 2015.

[FR Doc. 2015-16122
Filed 6-26-15; 11:15 am]
Billing code 3295-F5