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Feb 26, 2015

Senior U.S. lawmaker makes case against removing Cuba from terror list

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior U.S. lawmaker is pressing his case against any Obama administration plan to remove Cuba from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism, saying the communist-ruled island is harboring dozens of U.S. fugitives.

In letters released on Thursday, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez wrote about the fugitives to Secretary of State John Kerry and FBI director James Comey, asking that the issue be raised in upcoming talks with Cuban officials and contending that Havana should remain on the list.

Feb 25, 2015

Netanyahu declines Democrats’ invitation for meeting during visit

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declined on Tuesday an invitation to meet with U.S. Senate Democrats during his trip to Washington next week.

“Though I greatly appreciate your kind invitation to meet with Democratic Senators, I believe that doing so at this time could compound the misperception of partisanship regarding my upcoming visit,” Netanyahu wrote in a letter to Senators Richard Durbin and Dianne Feinstein obtained by Reuters.

Feb 23, 2015

U.S. Senate Democrats invite Netanyahu to meeting during visit

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Two senior U.S. Senate Democrats invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday to a closed-door meeting with Democratic senators during his upcoming visit to Washington, warning that making U.S.-Israeli relations a partisan political issue could have “lasting repercussions.”

Senators Richard Durbin and Dianne Feinstein extended the invitation “to maintain Israel’s dialogue with both political parties in Congress,” according to a letter to the Israeli leader obtained by Reuters.

Feb 20, 2015

U.S. lawmaker pushes White House to aid allies in Islamic State fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior Republican lawmaker warned President Barack Obama she would do “everything within my power,” including holding up money, to push the United States to provide fighter jets and weapons to Egypt and other allies fighting Islamic State militants.

In a letter to the president, Kay Granger, chairwoman of the House of Representatives State and Foreign Operations subcommittee, said Egypt needs F-16 aircraft and M1A1 Abrams tanks held up since 2013.

Feb 20, 2015

Exclusive – U.S. lawmaker pushes White House to aid allies in Islamic State fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior Republican lawmaker warned President Barack Obama she would do “everything within my power,” including holding up money, to push the United States to provide fighter jets and weapons to Egypt and other allies fighting Islamic State militants.

In a letter to the president, Kay Granger, chairwoman of the House of Representatives State and Foreign Operations subcommittee, said Egypt needs F-16 aircraft and M1A1 Abrams tanks held up since 2013.

Feb 12, 2015

Battle lines emerge in US Congress over Obama Islamic State war plan

WASHINGTON, Feb 12 (Reuters) – House of Representatives
Speaker John Boehner said on Thursday Republicans want a
“strong, robust” authorization for military action against
Islamic State, underscoring sharp differences with Democrats
over President Barack Obama’s plans for the campaign.

A day after Obama sent his proposed authorization to
Congress, Boehner told a news conference he and his fellow
Republicans wanted to give U.S. military commanders enough
flexibility to defeat the militant group wherever it exists.

Feb 11, 2015

Obama seeks war authorization from Congress to fight Islamic State

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama sent Congress his text on Wednesday for an authorization to use military force in the campaign against Islamic State, limiting operations against the militants to three years and barring use of U.S. troops in “enduring offensive ground combat.”

According to the text, Obama also wants to repeal the 2002 measure that authorized the Iraq war. But his proposal leaves in place a 2001 authorization, passed shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks, for a campaign against al Qaeda and its affiliates.

Feb 11, 2015

Obama seeks some limits on ground troops for Islamic State fight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama will propose to Congress on Wednesday a new three-year authorization for the use of force against Islamic State with limits on U.S. combat troops’ involvement, lawmakers and congressional aides said.

Obama has defended his authority to lead an international coalition against Islamic State since Aug. 8 when U.S. fighter jets began attacking the jihadists in Iraq. But he has faced criticism for failing to seek the backing of Congress, where some accuse him of breaching his constitutional authority.

Feb 10, 2015

Obama readying request to use force against Islamic State

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House will ask Congress by Wednesday for new authority to use force against Islamic State fighters, congressional aides said on Monday, paving the way for lawmakers’ first vote on the scope of a campaign that is already six months old.

The United States is leading an international coalition against Islamic State, and President Barack Obama launched an air campaign in August against the militant fighters, who have killed thousands of people while seizing swaths of territory in Iraq and Syria.

Feb 6, 2015

U.S. lawmakers begin push for more sanctions on North Korea

WASHINGTON, Feb 5 (Reuters) – U.S. lawmakers introduced
legislation on Thursday to broaden sanctions against North Korea
by imposing stiffer punishments on foreign companies doing
business with Pyongyang, a measure that could impact mostly on
Chinese firms.

“In the wake of the state-sponsored cyber-attack on Sony
Pictures, the bipartisan legislation targets North Korea’s
access to the hard currency and other goods that help keep the
regime in power,” the bill’s co-sponsor, U.S. Republican
Representative Ed Royce, said.

    • 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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