Susan's Feed
May 23, 2012

Secret Service chief apologizes for prostitution scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The head of the Secret Service, in his first public appearance since a scandal involving Colombian prostitutes and his employees, apologized for the misconduct on Wednesday but lawmakers expressed doubt that this was an isolated incident.

Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan, gray-haired in a blue striped suit and tie, faced the Senate Homeland Security Committee and asserted that the behavior of a dozen employees in Cartagena last month did not reflect the culture of the agency.

May 23, 2012

U.S. Secret Service chief – no security breach from scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A prostitution scandal in Colombia involving U.S. Secret Service employees did not result in any security breach and was not behaviour that reflected the high ethical standards of the agency, the director of the agency said.

Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan defended the culture of the agency in testimony prepared for a Senate hearing on Wednesday, saying its employees were among the most dedicated and “self-sacrificing” in the federal government. It will be his first public appearance before Congress since the scandal.

May 22, 2012

Secret Service chief: no security breach from scandal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A prostitution scandal in Colombia involving U.S. Secret Service employees did not result in any security breach and was not behavior that reflected the high ethical standards of the agency, the director of the agency said.

Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan defended the culture of the agency in testimony prepared for a Senate hearing on Wednesday, saying its employees were among the most dedicated and “self-sacrificing” in the federal government. It will be his first public appearance before Congress since the scandal.

May 22, 2012

US senators cut funds for Iraq police training program

WASHINGTON, May 22 (Reuters) – A U.S. Senate panel on
Tuesday voted to eliminate funding for a police training program
for Iraq, saying the danger and expense were just too great
after the American troop pullout last year.

“Why keep throwing good money after bad?” asked Senator
Patrick Leahy, a Democrat and chairman of the Senate
appropriations subcommittee on foreign aid.

May 22, 2012

U.S. Senate approves tougher Iran sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate unanimously approved on Monday a package of new economic sanctions on Iran’s oil sector just days ahead of a meeting in Baghdad between major world powers and Tehran.

The sanctions add to a raft of punitive measures by the United States and the European Union aimed at shrinking Iran’s oil revenues to force it to halt a nuclear program the West suspects is being used to build an atomic bomb.

May 21, 2012

US Senate approves new Iran sanctions bill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate gave unanimous approval on Monday to a package of new economic sanctions on Iran’s oil sector just days ahead of a meeting in Baghdad between major world powers and Tehran.

The West suspects Iran is working to build a nuclear bomb and the sanctions are meant to strip Tehran of revenue by shutting down financial deals with Iran’s powerful state oil and tanker enterprises. Iran has said its nuclear program is for civilian purposes.

May 17, 2012

U.S. lawmakers want to halt aid to nations hosting Sudan’s Bashir

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A House of Representatives committee voted on Thursday to cut off economic aid to any country that hosts Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and other crimes.

The provision is not yet law, and could change as foreign aid legislation moves through Congress this year. It was approved by the House Appropriations Committee as part of that legislation, which would slash spending on the U.S. State Department and foreign assistance by some 9 percent.

Apr 29, 2012

U.S. military faces scrutiny over its prostitution policies

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – No one talks tougher against prostitution than the U.S. military.

Even in countries where prostitution is legal, military personnel violating a seven-year-old Department of Defense policy against paying for sex face up to a year in jail and dishonorable discharge if caught.

Apr 28, 2012

U.S. Secret Service limits alcohol, hotel guests on trips abroad

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Heavy drinking and bringing foreign nationals back to hotel rooms on trips abroad is now banned by the U.S. Secret Service in the wake of a growing scandal over allegations that agents consorted with prostitutes in Colombia this month.

The new rules of conduct issued on Friday also ban visits to “non-reputable establishments,” presumably including strip clubs, and say staff must obey U.S. laws even while abroad. A copy was provided to Reuters by the Secret Service, and a spokesman said they were effective immediately.

Apr 27, 2012

U.S. House panel may send scandal investigators to Colombia

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A congressional committee is considering sending investigators to Colombia in the coming weeks to gather information in an expanded probe of alleged Secret Service misconduct with prostitutes, the chairman said on Friday.

Representative Peter King, the Republican chairman of the House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee, said his staff will move to a “full-scale” investigation after it receives answers to 50 questions the panel posed to Secret Service Director Mark Sullivan about this month’s incident.