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Jan 14, 2014

U.S. spending bill restores aid to Egypt, includes $1.5 billion

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Congress’ new spending bill would restore more than $1.5 billion in military and economic aid to Egypt, which had been largely cut off after Egypt’s military ousted President Mohamed Mursi last summer.

The bill includes up to $1.3 billion in military assistance, and $250 million in economic support for Cairo, but ties the funding to the Egyptian government taking steps toward restoring democracy.

Jan 14, 2014

Iran deal progress dampens push for new U.S. sanctions bill

WASHINGTON, Jan 13 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama is
more likely to win his battle with the U.S. Congress to keep new
sanctions on Iran at bay now that world powers and Tehran have
made a new advance in talks to curb the Islamic Republic’s
nuclear program.

Despite strong support for the bill in the Senate, analysts,
lawmakers and congressional aides said on Monday that the
agreement to begin implementing a nuclear deal on Jan. 20 makes
it harder for sanctions hawks to attract more backers.

Jan 10, 2014

U.S. sanctions bill Iran nuclear talks ‘insurance policy’: Senator

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Democratic U.S. senator leading the charge to pass new sanctions on Iran despite objections from the Obama administration said on Friday the measure is a “diplomatic insurance policy” to push Tehran to comply with agreements to curtail its nuclear program.

Fifty-nine senators – 16 of them Democrats – of the 100 in the chamber were co-sponsoring the bill, despite the White House’s insistence that it could imperil delicate international negotiations with the Islamic Republic.

Jan 10, 2014

U.S. officials call for end to South Sudan violence, may cut aid

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – South Sudan risks losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. aid if its government and rebel leaders do not end a wave of violence in the fledgling democracy formed with Washington’s strong support, U.S. officials said on Thursday.

Three weeks of fighting, often along ethnic lines, is ringing alarm bells in Washington over the prospect that the conflict could spiral into full-blown civil war, spawning atrocities or making South Sudan the world’s next failed state.

Jan 9, 2014

U.S. officials worry over South Sudan violence, may cut aid

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – South Sudan risks losing hundreds of millions of dollars in U.S. aid if its government and rebel leaders do not end a wave of violence in the fledgling democracy formed with Washington’s strong support, U.S. officials said on Thursday.

Three weeks of fighting, often along ethnic lines, is ringing alarm bells in Washington over the prospect that the conflict could spiral into full-blown civil war, spawning atrocities or making South Sudan the world’s next failed state.

Jan 9, 2014

Senate majority support Iran sanctions bill opposed by Obama

WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – More than a majority of U.S.
senators support a bill to impose new sanctions on Iran should
the Islamic Republic break an agreement to curb its nuclear
program, aides said on Thursday, but there was no plan yet to
debate the measure.

The White House has threatened to veto the legislation,
and Iran says last November’s nuclear deal struck in Geneva
would be dead if the U.S. Congress imposes new sanctions.

Jan 7, 2014

U.S. senators push to admit more Syrian refugees

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democratic and Republican U.S. senators called on Tuesday for the country to take in more of the millions of people forced from their homes during Syria’s nearly three-year civil war.

Only 31 Syrian refugees – out of an estimated 2.3 million – were allowed into the United States in the fiscal year that ended in October.

Dec 20, 2013

U.S. Senate makes move toward vote on new Iran sanctions bill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has begun a process that could allow the Senate to vote as soon as next month to impose new sanctions on Iran if talks on its nuclear program fail, Senate aides said on Friday, despite a White House veto threat.

Aides and lawmakers said Reid had filed Rule 14 for the sanctions bill, which allows him to bypass the normal process of bringing a bill for a Senate vote through committee.

Dec 20, 2013

Obama orders one-year review of sexual assault problem in military

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama ordered U.S. military leaders on Friday to conduct a one-year review of efforts to eliminate sexual assaults in the armed forces and toughen the response to such cases.

He acted in response to a spate of embarrassing sex-related incidents in the military that provoked strong calls for reform and a Pentagon report showing a 37 percent jump in the estimated number of cases of unwanted sexual contact last year.

Dec 19, 2013

U.S. Capitol faces massive overhaul – and not via the ballot

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Americans longing for a makeover in Washington will get their wish partially granted as the dome of the U.S. Capitol – but not the lawmakers who work inside – undergoes a $60 million restoration.

After 150 years of exposure to rain, snow, sun and sleet, the cast-iron landmark is suffering from water leaks, cracks and corrosion that urgently need repair, Stephen Ayers, the Architect of the Capitol, said on Thursday.

    • About Patricia

      "Patricia Zengerle covers foreign policy and national security on Capitol Hill for Reuters. She recently covered the 2012 campaign and the White House and had been an editor in Washington, D.C., an editor in London, and a correspondent in Miami, Pittsburgh and New York. You can follow her on Twitter @ReutersZengerle"
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