Office of the Spokesperson
U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad departed on July 24 for travel to Doha, Islamabad, Kabul, Oslo, and Sofia.
In Doha and Kabul, Ambassador Khalilzad will press for resolution of the remaining issues ahead of intra-Afghan negotiations, specifically final prisoner exchanges and reduced violence.
In Islamabad, Ambassador Khalilzad will seek Pakistani support in the effort to advance intra-Afghan negotiations. In Oslo and Sofia, Ambassador Khalilzad will update NATO Allies on the Afghan peace process.
The parties are closer than ever to the start of Intra-Afghan Negotiations, the key next step to ending Afghanistan’s 40-year long war. Although significant progress has been made on prisoner exchanges, the issue requires additional effort to fully resolve.
- Secretary Blinken’s Call with Special Envoy for the UN Secretary-General on Yemen GriffithsBy Sam NewsMarch 14, 2021Office of the [Read More…]
- Statement from Attorney General Merrick B. Garland Regarding Texas SB8By Sam NewsSeptember 6, 2021The U.S. Department of Justice today issued the following statement from Attorney General Merrick B. Garland regarding Texas SB8:[Read More…]
- Designation of Republic of Guatemala Congressperson Boris España Cáceres Due to Involvement in Significant CorruptionBy Sam NewsJune 17, 2021Ned Price, Department [Read More…]
- Jacksonville Woman Pleads Guilty to Attempting to Illegally Exporting Maritime Raiding Craft and Engines to ChinaBy Sam NewsSeptember 16, 2020Yang Yang (34, Jacksonville) has pleaded guilty to 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 in violation of United States (U.S.) law, and also to attempting to fraudulently export that equipment in violation of U.S. law. Yang faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set.[Read More…]
- Two Ukrainian Nationals Extradited to U.S. on Money Laundering ChargesBy Sam NewsMarch 5, 2021Two members of an international organized network that provided cash-out and money laundering services to cyber actors were extradited from the Czech Republic to Dallas.[Read More…]
- [Request for Reconsideration of Protest of Navy Contract Award for Base Support Services]By Sam NewsIn U.S GAO NewsSeptember 17, 2021A firm requested reconsideration of its dismissed protest of the Navy's decision to perform base operations and support services in-house rather than contract for these services, contending that the Navy's proposed corrective action failed to address all of its concerns. GAO held that it would not consider these issues, since the Navy's proposed corrective action may affect key requirements in the solicitation and render the protester's concerns academic. Accordingly, the request for reconsideration was denied.[Read More…]
- Alabama Man Sentenced to Prison for Tax EvasionBy Sam NewsDecember 14, 2020An Alabama man was sentenced to serve 12 months in prison for tax evasion, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division and U.S. Attorney Prim Escalona for the Northern District of Alabama announced today.[Read More…]
- Justice Department Acts To Shut Down Fraudulent Websites Exploiting The Covid-19 PandemicBy Sam NewsAugust 12, 2020The United States Department of Justice announced today that it has obtained a Temporary Restraining Order in federal court to combat fraud related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The enforcement action, filed in Tampa, Florida, is part of the Justice Department’s ongoing efforts prioritizing the detection, investigation, and prosecution of illegal conduct related to the pandemic. The action was brought based on an investigation conducted by United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), in coordination with the Vietnam Ministry of Public Security.[Read More…]
- Attorney General Merrick B. Garland Delivered a Policy Address Regarding Voting RightsBy Sam NewsJune 11, 2021Good afternoon. It’s wonderful to be here in the Great Hall with the dedicated staff of the Civil Rights Division, joined by our Deputy and Associate Attorneys General, and by our newly-arrived Assistant Attorney General, Kristen Clarke. Welcome. I have tremendous respect for the work you do every day to protect civil rights for everyone in America.[Read More…]
- U.S.-Europe Communiqué on Afghanistan and Peace EffortsBy Sam NewsJuly 25, 2021Office of the [Read More…]
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken at a Virtual Meeting with Japanese Women EntrepreneursBy Sam NewsMarch 16, 2021Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
- Justice Department Settles Claims Against City of Meriden, Connecticut, Involving Denial of MosqueBy Sam NewsNovember 5, 2020The Justice Department and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Connecticut today announced an agreement with the City of Meriden, Connecticut to resolve allegations that the city violated the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000 (RLUIPA) by denying the application of the Omar Islamic Center to establish a mosque in March 2019, and by maintaining a zoning code that treats religious assemblies and institutions on less than equal terms with nonreligious assemblies and institutions in nine zoning districts.[Read More…]
- CEO Sentenced for $150 Million Health Care Fraud and Money Laundering SchemeBy Sam NewsFebruary 3, 2021More from: February 3, [Read More…]
- School Owner Sentenced for Defrauding Department of Veterans Affairs Program Dedicated to Rehabilitating Disabled Military VeteransBy Sam NewsJune 15, 2021A Maryland man was sentenced Monday to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay $150,000 in restitution for defrauding a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) program dedicated to rehabilitating military veterans with disabilities.[Read More…]
- Stabilization and Reconstruction: Actions Needed to Improve Governmentwide Planning and Capabilities for Future OperationsBy Sam NewsIn U.S GAO NewsAugust 25, 2021The United States has become increasingly involved in stabilization and reconstruction operations as evidenced in the Balkans, Haiti, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In December 2005, the President issued National Security Presidential Directive 44, establishing governmentwide policy for coordinating, planning, and implementing U.S. stabilization and reconstruction assistance to affected foreign entities. This testimony addresses stabilization and reconstruction issues related to (1) State Department (State) efforts to improve interagency planning and coordination, (2) Department of Defense (DOD) efforts to enhance its capabilities and planning, and (3) State efforts to develop civilian capabilities. GAO's statement is based on its May 2007 report on DOD stability operations and preliminary observations related to State's interagency planning framework and civilian response capabilities.State and DOD have begun to take steps to better coordinate stabilization and reconstruction activities, but several significant challenges may hinder their ability to integrate planning for potential operations and strengthen military and civilian capabilities to conduct them. State's Office of the Coordinator for Reconstruction and Stabilization is developing a framework for U.S. agencies to use when planning stabilization and reconstruction operations, but the framework has yet to be fully applied to any operation. The National Security Council has not approved the entire framework, guidance related to the framework is unclear, and some interagency partners have not accepted it. For example, some interagency partners stated that the framework's planning process is cumbersome and too time consuming for the results it produces. While steps have been taken to address concerns and strengthen the framework's effectiveness, differences in planning capacities and procedures among U.S. government agencies may pose obstacles to effective coordination. DOD has taken several positive steps to improve its ability to conduct stability operations but faces challenges in developing capabilities and measures of effectiveness, integrating the contributions of non-DOD agencies into military contingency plans, and incorporating lessons learned from past operations into future plans. These challenges, if not addressed, may hinder DOD's ability to fully coordinate and integrate stabilization and reconstruction activities with other agencies or to develop the full range of capabilities those operations may require. Among its many efforts, DOD has developed a new policy, planning construct and joint operating concept with a greater focus on stability operations, and each service is pursuing efforts to improve capabilities. However, inadequate guidance, practices that inhibit sharing of planning information with non-DOD organizations, and differences in the planning capabilities and capacities of DOD and non-DOD organizations hinder the effectiveness of these improvement efforts. Since 2005, State has been developing three civilian corps to deploy rapidly to international crises, but significant challenges must be addressed before they will be fully capable. State and other agencies face challenges in establishing two of these units--the Active Response Corps and Standby Response Corps--because of staffing and resource constraints and concerns that stabilization and reconstruction operations are not core missions for each parent organization. Congress has not yet enacted legislation necessary for State to obligate funds for the third unit, the Civilian Reserve Corps, staffed solely with non-federal volunteers. Further, State has not fully defined the types of missions these personnel would be deployed to support.[Read More…]
- President of Commercial Flooring Company Pleads Guilty to Rigging Bids in Violation of Federal Antitrust LawsBy Sam NewsNovember 18, 2020Delmar E. Church Jr., the president and one of the principal owners of a Chicago-area commercial flooring company, pleaded guilty for his role in a conspiracy to rig bids and fix prices for commercial flooring services and products sold in the United States, the Department of Justice announced. The defendant is cooperating with the department’s ongoing investigation.[Read More…]
- Justice Department Files Complaint against Jeffrey Lowe and Tiger King LLC for Violations of the Endangered Species Act and the Animal Welfare ActBy Sam NewsNovember 19, 2020Today, the Department of Justice filed a civil complaint against Jeffrey and Lauren Lowe, Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park LLC, and Tiger King LLC, to address recurring inhumane treatment and improper handling of animals protected by the Endangered Species Act.[Read More…]
- Department Press Briefing – February 17, 2021By Sam NewsFebruary 17, 2021Ned Price, Department [Read More…]
- Kansas Man Indicted with Hate Crime for Racially-Motivated Threat of a Minor and for Unlawfully Possessing a FirearmBy Sam NewsNovember 23, 2020The Justice Department announced that a federal grand jury in Kansas City, Kansas, returned an indictment charging Colton Donner, 25, with threatening an African-American male juvenile, because of the victim’s race and because the victim was living in a home in Paola, Kansas, in violation of Title 42, U.S. Code, Section 3631.[Read More…]
- Nine Charged with $24 Million COVID-Relief Fraud SchemeBy Sam NewsAugust 6, 2020The owner of a Florida talent management company and four others were charged in complaints unsealed yesterday for their alleged participation in a scheme to file fraudulent loan applications seeking more than $24 million in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.[Read More…]