Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 112 Part 5.djvu/54

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112 STAT. 2812 PUBLIC LAW 105-292—OCT. 27, 1998 TITLE VI—REFUGEE, ASYLUM, AND CONSULAR MATTERS 22 USC 6471. SEC. 601. USE OF ANNUAL REPORT. The Annual Report, together with other relevant documentation, shall serve as a resource for immigration judges and consular, refugee, and asylum officers in cases involving claims of persecution on the grounds of religion. Absence of reference by the Annual Report to conditions described by the alien shall not constitute the sole grounds for a denial of the alien's claim. 22 USC 6472. SEC. 602. REFORM OF REFUGEE POLICY. (a) TRAINING.— Section 207 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1157) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: "(f)(1) The Attorney General, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall provide all United States officials adjudicating refugee cases under this section with the same training as that provided to officers adjudicating asylum cases under section 208. "(2) Such training shall include country-specific conditions, instruction on the internationaly recognized right to freedom of religion, instruction on methods of religious persecution practiced in foreign countries, and applicable distinctions within a country between the nature of and treatment of various religious practices and believers.". (b) TRAINING FOR FOREIGN SERVICE OFFICERS. —Section 708 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as added by section 104 of this Act, is further amended— (1) by inserting "(a)" before "The Secretary of State"; and (2) by adding at the end the following: "(b) The Secretary of State shall provide sessions on refugee law and adjudications and on religious persecution to each individual seeking a commission as a United States consular officer. The Secretary shall also ensure that any member of the Service who is assigned to a position that may be called upon to assess requests for consideration for refugee admissions, including any consular officer, has completed training on refugee law and refugee adjudications in addition to the training required in this section.". (c) GUIDELINES FOR REFUGEE-PROCESSING POSTS. — (1) GUIDELINES FOR ADDRESSING HOSTILE BIASES.— The Attorney General and the Secretary of State shall develop and implement guidelines that address potential biases in personnel of the Immigration and Naturalization Service that are hired abroad and involved with duties which could constitute an effective barrier to a refugee claim if such personnel carries a bias against the claimant on the grounds of religion, race, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. The subject matter of this training should be culturally sensitive and tailored to provide a nonbiased, nonadversarial atmosphere for the purpose of refugee adjudications. (2) GUIDELINES FOR REFUGEE-PROCESSING POSTS IN ESTABLISHING AGREEMENTS WITH UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT- DESIGNATED REFUGEE PROCESSING ENTITIES. —The Attorney General and the Secretary of State shall develop and implement