Office of the Spokesperson
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken will deliver on-camera remarks to the press to provide an update on our approach to Afghanistan. These remarks will take place today, Friday, September 3, at 2:00 p.m. in the Press Briefing Room at the Department of State.
This event will be pooled press coverage only and livestreamed on www.state.gov.
There will be no Department Press Briefing today.
For further information, please contact the Office of Press Relations at PAPressDuty@state.gov.
- Political Operatives Indicted for Alleged Scheme Involving Illegal Campaign Contribution to 2016 Presidential CampaignBy Sam NewsSeptember 20, 2021An indictment was unsealed today in the District of Columbia charging a Kentucky man and a Florida man both with conspiracy to solicit and cause an illegal campaign contribution by a foreign national, effect a conduit contribution and cause false records to be filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) and related substantive offenses.[Read More…]
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- Chinese National Sentenced to More than Three Years in Federal Prison for Attempting to Illegally Export Maritime Raiding Craft and Engines to ChinaBy Sam NewsJuly 16, 2021A Chinese national was sentenced Wednesday to three years and six months in in federal prison for conspiring to submit false export information through the federal government’s Automated Export System and to fraudulently export to China maritime raiding craft and engines, and attempting to fraudulently export that equipment in violation of U.S. law.[Read More…]
- Federal charges filed against operators of Houston stash houseBy Sam NewsIn Justice NewsMay 3, 2021Five individuals in the [Read More…]
- Revocation of the Terrorist Designations of AnsarallahBy Sam NewsFebruary 12, 2021Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
- Eastern Kentucky Doctor Sentenced to Prison for Unlawfully Distributing Controlled SubstancesBy Sam NewsDecember 10, 2020A Kentucky doctor and his former office manager were sentenced to 60 and 32 months respectively in prison Wednesday for their roles in unlawfully distributing controlled substances during a time when the defendants did not have a legitimate medical practice.[Read More…]
- Member of White Supremacist Gang Pleads Guilty to Violent Assault and Conspiracy to Sell FirearmsBy Sam NewsMay 7, 2021A member of the Aryan Circle (AC) pleaded guilty Thursday to his role in an October 2016 violent assault, as well as conspiring to sell firearms to a convicted felon. Another individual pleaded guilty on April 19, to conspiring with members of the AC to sell methamphetamine.[Read More…]
- Even During COVID, Courts Find Ways to Welcome New AmericansBy Sam NewsIn U.S CourtsJuly 7, 2020When the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic first forced courthouses to limit access to the general public, one of the first events to be canceled was an especially joyous rite: the naturalization of new U.S. citizens.[Read More…]
- UN High Level Meeting on HIV/AIDSBy Sam NewsJune 12, 2021Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
- Artificial Intelligence: An Accountability Framework for Federal Agencies and Other EntitiesBy Sam NewsIn U.S GAO NewsJuly 1, 2021What GAO Found To help managers ensure accountability and responsible use of artificial intelligence (AI) in government programs and processes, GAO developed an AI accountability framework. This framework is organized around four complementary principles, which address governance, data, performance, and monitoring. For each principle, the framework describes key practices for federal agencies and other entities that are considering, selecting, and implementing AI systems. Each practice includes a set of questions for entities, auditors, and third-party assessors to consider, as well as procedures for auditors and third- party assessors. Why GAO Developed This Framework AI is a transformative technology with applications in medicine, agriculture, manufacturing, transportation, defense, and many other areas. It also holds substantial promise for improving government operations. Federal guidance has focused on ensuring AI is responsible, equitable, traceable, reliable, and governable. Third-party assessments and audits are important to achieving these goals. However, AI systems pose unique challenges to such oversight because their inputs and operations are not always visible. GAO's objective was to identify key practices to help ensure accountability and responsible AI use by federal agencies and other entities involved in the design, development, deployment, and continuous monitoring of AI systems. To develop this framework, GAO convened a Comptroller General Forum with AI experts from across the federal government, industry, and nonprofit sectors. It also conducted an extensive literature review and obtained independent validation of key practices from program officials and subject matter experts. In addition, GAO interviewed AI subject matter experts representing industry, state audit associations, nonprofit entities, and other organizations, as well as officials from federal agencies and Offices of Inspector General. Artificial Intelligence (AI) Accountability Framework For more information, contact Taka Ariga at (202) 512-6888 or ArigaT@gao.gov.[Read More…]
- Apply for Preclearance ExpansionBy Sam NewsIn TravelSeptember 30, 2020Preclearance [Read More…]
- Justice Department Settles with Iowa-Based Nursing Home and Management Company to Resolve Immigration-Related Discrimination ClaimBy Sam NewsAugust 13, 2021The Department of Justice announced today that it reached a settlement with JP Senior Healthcare LLC and JP Senior Management LLC, resolving the department’s claims that these companies violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) by discriminating against a Latino employee based on assumptions that the worker was not a U.S. citizen.[Read More…]
- Justice Department Settles with Large Health Care Organization to Resolve Software-Based Immigration-Related Discrimination ClaimsBy Sam NewsAugust 25, 2021The Department of Justice announced today that it reached a settlement with Ascension Health Alliance (Ascension), a Missouri-based health care organization with more than 2,600 sites – including 146 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of Columbia.[Read More…]
- Frequently Asked Questions about the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA)By Sam NewsIn TravelSeptember 26, 2020Content currently [Read More…]
- Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim Delivers Remarks at Georgetown Law’s Global Antitrust Enforcement SymposiumBy Sam NewsOctober 6, 2020“Reflections”: Looking [Read More…]
- Small Business Administration: Physical Disaster Loan Performance Before and After Changes in Statutory Collateral RequirementsBy Sam NewsIn U.S GAO NewsAugust 27, 2021Why GAO Did This Study SBA assists most types of businesses regardless of size and others affected by natural and other declared disasters through its Disaster Loan Program. The Rebuilding Small Businesses After Disasters Act included a provision for GAO to review the performance of SBA's physical disaster loan portfolio and compare the performance of loans made before changes to the collateral requirements because of the RISE After Disaster Act of 2015 to loans made after the changes were in effect. To perform this work, GAO obtained and analyzed loan data made under SBA disaster declarations from January 1, 2000, to September 30, 2020; reviewed relevant federal laws and regulations; and interviewed SBA officials. What GAO Found When disaster strikes, the Small Business Administration's (SBA) Disaster Loan Program provides direct assistance in the form of low-interest loans. Physical disaster loans can be used to rebuild and replace uninsured or underinsured property damaged in a declared disaster area, helping homeowners, renters, businesses, and nonprofit organizations. But in order for an applicant to qualify for SBA's physical disaster loans, the property damage must occur in a federally declared disaster area. The President can issue a major disaster declaration in response to a request by the governor of a state or territory or the chief executive of a tribal government. For an event that does not rise to the level of a presidential disaster declaration, the SBA Administrator can issue an agency disaster declaration in response to a timely request by a state governor. The Recovery Improvements for Small Entities (RISE) After Disaster Act of 2015 temporarily modified collateral requirements for loans approved under SBA disaster declarations. Specifically, the act temporarily raised the limit for loans without collateral from $14,000 to $25,000. The increase expires on November 25, 2022, when, absent further revision of the statute, the amount will revert back to $14,000. GAO reviewed SBA's $855 million of approved physical disaster loans made under SBA disaster declarations from January 1, 2000, to September 30, 2020. GAO found that default and charge-off rates were higher for loans that were approved before the collateral changes that the RISE After Disaster Act of 2015 made when compared to loans approved after these changes were in effect. However, as the loans made after the RISE After Disaster Act of 2015 have more time to mature, their default and charge-off rates may increase. Loans made before the RISE After Disaster Act of 2015 have had approximately 5 to 20 years to mature, while the loans made after have all had less than 5 years. GAO's analysis did not isolate the contribution the collateral changes made to the difference in loan performance from other contributing factors, such as the state of the economy or changes in SBA lending practices. To minimize the effect of the difference in time of performance of the two groups of loans, GAO assessed the performance for the initial 4 years following loan disbursement of subsets of loans made approximately 5 years before and after the RISE After Disaster Act of 2015. GAO found that for these subsets of loans, the default and charge-off rates varied by less than one percentage point for each of the years. In addition, GAO compared the performance of loans with collateral to the performance of loans without collateral and found that loans with collateral did not necessarily perform better than those without collateral. For more information, contact Cheryl Clark at (202) 512-9377 or firstname.lastname@example.org.[Read More…]
- Arkansas Landscaper Pleads Guilty to Tax FraudBy Sam NewsSeptember 15, 2021An Arkansas resident pleaded guilty today to filing a false corporate tax return.[Read More…]
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- Judiciary Employees Find Ways to Help During PandemicBy Sam NewsIn U.S CourtsJune 23, 2020Learn about the countless Judiciary employees across the court system who have volunteered to help people in need in their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.[Read More…]
- Utah Man Posing As Medical Doctor To Sell Baseless Coronavirus Cure Indicted On Fraud ChargesBy Sam NewsJuly 28, 2020Utah resident Gordon H. Pedersen has been indicted for posing as a medical doctor to sell a baseless treatment for coronavirus (COVID-19). According to the indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Salt Lake City late last week, Pedersen fraudulently promoted and sold ingestible silver-based products as a cure for COVID-19 despite having no evidence that his products could treat or cure the disease. Pedersen is also alleged to have claimed to be a physician and worn a stethoscope and white lab coat in videos and photos posted on the Internet to further his alleged fraud scheme.[Read More…]