State Department

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Under Tightened Visa Rules, an Aunt Isn't a 'Close Relative'

Move affects refugees, citizens of 6 countries

(Newser) - The Trump administration has set new criteria for visa applicants from six mainly Muslim nations and all refugees that require a "close" family or business tie to the United States. The move, which takes effect at 8pm Thursday, came after the Supreme Court partially restored an executive order from... More »

State Dept. Blog Promoting Trump's Club Makes Waves

Blog post appears to be promoting Mar-a-Lago

(Newser) - A State Department blog post is making waves—because it appears to be promoting Mar-a-Lago, the private Florida club President Trump owns. The post was published April 4, but gained attention Monday after people realized it had been shared on the US Embassy in London's website, and started making... More »

One Word Keeps Dogging Rex Tillerson: Absence

The secretary of State has kept an extremely low profile thus far

(Newser) - A word that has been dogging Secretary of State Rex Tillerson: absence. Absence from the spotlight, from a high-profile human rights event Friday, and from the press, though that's set to change, somewhat, as of Monday. A rep for the State department attempted to answer the question of where,... More »

1K State Department Officials Sign Dissent Memo

Spicer says they should 'get with the program' or go

(Newser) - President Trump's refugee and visa ban "runs counter to American values" and "will hurt America economically," according to a dissent memo signed by an unprecedented number of State Department officials. More than 1,000 officials, including American diplomats all over the world, had signed the cable... More »

State Department Hit by Mass Exodus of Senior Officials

The Trump administration wanted to 'clean house,' says one source

(Newser) - On Wednesday, four top-level management officials resigned from the State Department, the Washington Post reports. A former State Department chief of staff calls it the "single biggest simultaneous departure of institutional memory that anyone can remember." According to CNN , the four officials are taking 150 total years of... More »

Senate Committee Narrowly Backs Tillerson as SecState

Vote is 11-10 along party lines

(Newser) - Rex Tillerson's bid to be secretary of state narrowly won approval Monday from the Republican-led Foreign Relations Committee, a move that all but assures Senate confirmation of President Donald Trump's choice to be the nation's top diplomat, the AP reports. Members of the committee voted along party... More »

Trump Team Wants Info on Gender-Equality Programs

The programs are a part of Hillary Clinton's legacy

(Newser) - Donald Trump's transition team has requested information from the State Department regarding "gender-related staffing, programming, and funding," the Washington Post reports. Both the Post and the New York Times got their hands on a copy of the memo. The request specifies programs that “promote gender equality,... More »

Trump Team Is Feuding Over Mitt Romney

Some question if he's loyal enough to be secretary of state

(Newser) - The debate over who should be Donald Trump's secretary of state has moved from behind closed doors to … Twitter. Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway took to Twitter on Thursday to discuss Mitt Romney, a candidate for the post, suggesting a vocal critic of Trump shouldn't be favored over... More »

ICC: Probe Into American War Crimes May Be Coming

Court says US troops tortured detainees

(Newser) - The International Criminal Court is talking about investigating Americans for alleged war crimes in Afghanistan, a move that the State Department considers both unwarranted and inappropriate. The department says that not only is the US not a member of the ICC, it has its own justice system capable of dealing... More »

US Did Pressure Ecuador About Assange: Report

But the State Dept. denies it

(Newser) - Ecuador may be claiming its decision to cut Julian Assange's internet was all its own , but that's not the story some US officials are telling. Intelligence sources tell NBC News that the US government quietly communicated to Ecuador that Assange is tied up with Russian hacking—officials say... More »

Clinton Aide Allegedly Offered FBI a Deal to Declassify Email

Allegation raised in new release of FBI documents

(Newser) - The latest release of FBI documents on the investigation of Hillary Clinton's emails has revealed what Donald Trump calls "felony corruption." According to the documents, FBI employees told investigators that State Department official Patrick Kennedy had pressured them to change their finding that one of the emails... More »

State Department Reopens Clinton Email Probe

She and her former aides could face 'administrative sanctions'

(Newser) - The State Department is reopening an internal investigation of possible mishandling of classified information by Hillary Clinton and top aides, the AP reports. Spokesperson John Kirby says the email probe is restarting now that the Justice Department isn't pursuing a criminal prosecution. The State Department suspended its review in... More »

GOP Benghazi Report: Clinton Had Intel to See Risk

Nothing short of an attack would have convinced secretary of the danger

(Newser) - A Republican report on the 2012 attack in Benghazi finds Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration should have realized an attack was possible before it took place. The report from the House Benghazi Committee notes the administration failed to recognize the risks of rising crime levels and gun ownership. "... More »

Diplomats Buck White House, Demand Action in Syria

State Department 'dissent' cable calls for airstrikes

(Newser) - Dozens of State Department employees have endorsed an internal document that advocates US military action to pressure Syria's government into accepting a cease-fire and engaging in peace talks, officials say. The position is at odds with US policy. The "dissent channel cable" was signed by 51 mostly mid-level... More »

Number of Terror Attacks Actually Fell Last Year

There was a 13% decline from 2014: State Dept. report

(Newser) - The State Department says there was a 13% decrease in the number of global terrorist attacks between 2014 and 2015—the first such decline since 2012. There were 11,774 attacks that resulted in 28,328 deaths in 2015, compared with 13,463 attacks in 2014 that killed 32,727... More »

State Dept. Admits Tampering With 'Embarrassing' Video

Comments on Iran talks were deleted from 2013 footage

(Newser) - The State Department says a minutes-long exchange in which a reporter questioned whether officials lied about talks with Iran vanished from a 2013 press video in a cut it's now admitting was "deliberate." Spokesman John Kirby says an official in the public affairs bureau—he says he... More »

State Dept. IG: Clinton's Email Broke the Rules

Agency has 'longstanding, systemic weaknesses'

(Newser) - The FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email use continues, but a report from the State Department's independent watchdog has arrived. The 83-page review from inspector general Steve Linick—whom the Clinton camp accuses of working with Republicans to take down her campaign—focuses on record keeping and... More »

State Dept. Doesn't Think You're a '10'

Spring break warning draws backlash

(Newser) - The State Department was accused of "negging its own citizens" Wednesday after telling Americans that they should beware of foreigners who find them attractive. "Not a '10' in the US? Then not a 10 overseas. Beware of being lured into buying expensive drinks or worse—being robbed,... More »

Why You Should Renew Your Aging Passport Now

Delays expected with increased demand until 2018

(Newser) - If your US passport is set to expire in the next year or two, you might want to jump the gun and send your forms in now. The State Department warns 17 million new passports and renewals will be issued in 2016—up 1.5 million from last year—and... More »

State Department Boasts of 'Bringing Peace' to Syria

Blog post also praises United States for 'winning fight against violent extremists'

(Newser) - Everyone's entitled to a bit of boasting now and again, but a year-in-review State Department blog post appears to have veered into overstatement territory on Syria, Politico reports. Authored by spokesman John Kirby, the DipNote post , entitled "Pivotal Foreign Policy Moments of 2015," combines the recently trending... More »

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