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Fact Sheet: FBI Outreach Concerning Human Rights

Fact Sheet: FBI Outreach Concerning Human Rights

The FBI reaches out to diaspora communities for a variety of reasons, building relationships to serve and protect the public. The FBI has a mandate to investigate serious human rights violations to ensure perpetrators within the U.S. or with U.S. status abroad face justice for their crimes.

In order to find perpetrators who often blend into communities by posing among innocent refugee populations, the FBI needs the assistance of diaspora community members. The FBI seeks information from diaspora members, refugees, and asylum seekers here in the U.S. with knowledge of human rights violations committed abroad. Tips from witnesses and victims are key to assisting FBI efforts to find perpetrators hiding here in the U.S. and bring them to justice. Additionally, tips about serious human rights violations that have taken place abroad help the FBI identify human rights violators and work with partner agencies to keep them from coming into the U.S. in the future.

Diaspora members, refugees, and asylum seekers have often faced incredible hardships to find safety here in the U.S., and the FBI wants to ensure those responsible for suffering can never find safe haven in the U.S. Below are some facts about your rights and protections when speaking with the FBI:

  • You are never obligated to answer FBI questions or take a meeting with FBI personnel.
    • If the FBI contacts you for information related to human rights, it is an informal request for your help—you do not have to speak to the FBI.
  • The FBI cannot threaten or harass you or your family or detain you without cause.
    • The FBI’s purpose in asking diaspora communities about human rights abuses is only to gather information about perpetrators who may be in the U.S.—you should not feel intimidated to speak to the FBI.
  • You can always remain anonymous if you choose.
    • The FBI has an online tips website where you can anonymously submit information: tips.fbi.gov.
    • If you choose to speak to the FBI, you can tell the FBI you do not want any information attributed to you; the FBI will respect your privacy.
  • You have flexibility to speak to the FBI at the date, time, and location of your choosing.
    • If you would like to share information with the FBI, you can choose what works for your schedule and can choose a meeting place where you feel most comfortable.
  • The FBI fully understands the risk to you and your family when reporting information to the FBI and will undertake all possible precautions for your safety.

The FBI understands telling your story can be extremely difficult. The FBI has specially trained victim specialists at all field office locations that can accompany agents to meetings to ensure you feel comfortable and supported. For information about victim assistance, you can call the FBI's Office for Victim Assistance at (866) 828-5320.


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 In Pursuit of…Joseph Kony

Joseph KonyIn 2005, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for Joseph Kony—head of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA)—and four other LRA leaders for crimes against humanity and war crimes.

In 2010, the U.S. enacted into law the Lord’s Resistance Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act, which reaffirmed U.S. commitment to support our nation’s regional partners’ efforts to end the atrocities in central Africa. Key objectives of the U.S. commitment include increased protection of civilians, continued humanitarian relief, and—where the FBI’s Genocide War Crimes Program plays a supportive role—the apprehension of Kony and other senior LRA commanders.


Contact the FBI
If you have any information about perpetrators of genocide, war crimes, or other related mass atrocities, please submit it to us at https://tips.fbi.gov/ or contact your local FBI office, domestically or internationally.