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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release May 5, 1997


With a view to receiving the advice and consent of the Senate to ratification, I transmit herewith the Agreement Between the Government of the United States and the Government of Hong Kong for the Transfer of Sentenced Persons signed at Hong Kong on April 15, 1997. I transmit also, for the information of the Senate, the report of the Department of State with respect to this Agreement.

At present, transfers of sentenced persons between the United States and Hong Kong (in either direction) are conducted pursuant to the 1983 multilateral Council of Europe Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons, which is in force for both the United States and the United Kingdom, and which the latter has extended to Hong Kong. Effective July 1, 1997, however, when Hong Kong reverts to the sovereignty of the People's Republic of China, the Council of Europe Convention will no longer provide a basis for such transfers.

The agreement signed on April 15, 1997, will provide a basis for such transfers to continue after Hong Kong's reversion. The agreement is modeled after both the Council of Europe Convention and other bilateral prisoner transfer treaties to which the United States is a party. It would establish essentially the same procedures as are now followed with respect to transfers of prisoners between the United States and Hong Kong, and would continue the requirement that all transfers be consented to by the sentencing state, the sentenced person, and the receiving state. When the sentenced person has been sentenced under the laws of a State of the United States, the consent of the authorities of that State will also be required.

I recommend that the Senate of the United States promptly give its advice and consent to the ratification of this Agreement.



May 5, 1997.

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