FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 11, 2016
Information on the U.S. Foreign Agents Registration Act
In the interest of clarifying understandings of relevant U.S. law, the U.S. Embassy offers the following information on the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), and notes where this U.S. law differs from the draft Israeli NGO law in certain respects.
As a general matter, U.S. law imposes no limits, restrictions, or transparency requirements on the receipt of foreign funding by NGOs operating in the United States, other than those generally applicable to all Americans.
In contrast, the draft Israeli law would target NGOs simply because they are funded principally by foreign government entities. That is not how the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) works. FARA requires individuals or organizations to register as foreign agents only if they engage in certain specified activities at the order, request, or under the direction or control, of a foreign principal – not simply by receiving contributions from such an entity. As a result, it does not create the chilling effect on NGO activities that we are concerned about in reviewing the draft Israeli NGO law.