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The World Trade Organization: Background and Issues
The World Trade Organization (WTO) was established on January 1, 1995, under an agreement reached during the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations. The Uruguay Round was the last of a series of periodic trade negotiations held under the auspices of the WTO’s predecessor, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). Among the questions asked during debate on U.S. trade policy and the WTO are: To what extent should the United States meet its trade goals in theWTO versus other options? Can the United States maintain its sovereignty as a member of the WTO? Are U.S. interests served through the WTO dispute process? Should the WTO continue to cover traditional trade issues only, or should it be broadened to include nontraditional issues such as labor and the environment? What is the role of Congress in U.S. participation in the WTO?
The World Trade Organization: Background and Issues
The World Trade Organization (WTO), which was established on January 1, 1995, is the principal organization for rules governing international trade. This report provides general background on the WTO: its establishment, principles, administrative bodies, and membership. It also includes a brief discussion of policy issues pertaining to the WTO agenda, U.S. sovereignty and membership in the WTO, the congressional role in U.S. participation in the WTO, and pursuit of U.S. trade goals in the WTO compared to other options.
Foreign Terrorist Organizations
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The World Trade Organization: Background and Issues
The World Trade Organization (WTO) was established on January 1, 1995, under an agreement reached during the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations. The Uruguay Round was the last of a series of periodic trade negotiations held under the auspices of the WTO’s predecessor, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). Among the questions asked during debate on U.S. trade policy and the WTO are: To what extent should the United States meet its trade goals in theWTO versus other options? Can the United States maintain its sovereignty as a member of the WTO? Are U.S. interests served through the WTO dispute process? Should the WTO continue to cover traditional trade issues only, or should it be broadened to include nontraditional issues such as labor and the environment? What is the role of Congress in U.S. participation in the WTO?
The European Union in 2005 and Beyond
The European Union (EU) experienced significant changes in 2004 as it enlarged from 15 to 25 members and continued work on a new constitutional treaty to institute internal reforms and further EU political integration. In 2005, the EU is expected to build on these efforts and seek to implement several recent foreign policy and defense initiatives. This report describes the current status of the EU’s “constitution,” EU enlargement, the EU’s evolving foreign and defense policies, and possible implications for U.S.-EU relations.
Extradition To and From the United States: Overview of the Law and Recent Treaties
“Extradition” is the formal surrender of a person by a State to another State for prosecution or punishment. Extradition to or from the United States is a creature of treaty. The United States has extradition treaties with over a hundred of the nations of the world. International terrorism and drug trafficking have made extradition an increasingly important law enforcement tool. This is a brief overview of federal law in the area and of the adjustments in recent treaties to make them more responsive to American law enforcement interests.
The European Union in 2005 and Beyond
The European Union (EU) experienced significant changes in 2004 as it enlarged from 15 to 25 members and continued work on a new constitutional treaty to institute internal reforms and further EU political integration. In 2005, the EU is expected to build on these efforts and seek to implement several recent foreign policy and defense initiatives. This report describes the current status of the EU’s “constitution,” EU enlargement, the EU’s evolving foreign and defense policies, and possible implications for U.S.-EU relations.
The European Union in 2005 and Beyond
The European Union (EU) experienced significant changes in 2004 as it enlarged from 15 to 25 members and continued work on a new constitutional treaty to institute internal reforms and further EU political integration. In 2005, the EU is expected to build on these efforts and seek to implement several recent foreign policy and defense initiatives. This report describes the current status of the EU’s “constitution,” EU enlargement, the EU’s evolving foreign and defense policies, and possible implications for U.S.-EU relations.
The European Union in 2005 and Beyond
The European Union (EU) experienced significant changes in 2004 as it enlarged from 15 to 25 members and continued work on a new constitutional treaty to institute internal reforms and further EU political integration. In 2005, the EU is expected to build on these efforts and seek to implement several recent foreign policy and defense initiatives. This report describes the current status of the EU’s “constitution,” EU enlargement, the EU’s evolving foreign and defense policies, and possible implications for U.S.-EU relations.
A Shift in the International Security Environment: Potential Implications for Defense-Issues for Congress
This report discuses a shift to a new international security environment and implications of that new environment on defense-related issues. It does not discuss potential implications of a shift in the international security environment for other policy areas, such as foreign policy and diplomacy, trade and finance, energy, and foreign assistance.
A Shift in the International Security Environment: Potential Implications for Defense-Issues for Congress
This report discusses the changing international security environment and how the new realities should effect U.S. defense spending and strategy.
Northern Ireland: The Peace Process
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Northern Ireland: The Peace Process
No Description Available.
The European Union in 2006 and Beyond
The European Union (EU) experienced significant changes in 2004 as it enlarged from 15 to 25 members and continued work on a new constitutional treaty to institute internal reforms and further EU political integration. In 2005, the EU is expected to build on these efforts and seek to implement several recent foreign policy and defense initiatives. This report describes the current status of the EU’s “constitution,” EU enlargement, the EU’s evolving foreign and defense policies, and possible implications for U.S.-EU relations.
U.S.-EU Cooperation Against Terrorism
This report examines the evolution of counterterrorism cooperation between the United States and the European Union (EU), particularly since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. It includes a discussion of U.S.-EU cooperation progress and ongoing challenges, as well as perspectives and issues for Congress.
Terrorism Risk Insurance Legislation in the 114th Congress: Issue Summary and Side-by-Side Analysis
This report briefly outlines the issues involved with terrorism insurance, summarizes extension legislation, and includes a side-by-side comparison of Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (TRIA; P.L. 107-297) law and the bills introduced in the 114th and 113th Congresses.
U.S. Citizens Kidnapped by the Islamic State
This report briefly examines the kidnapping and killing of U.S. citizens by the terrorist group known as the Islamic State (IS).
Scotland's Independence Referendum
This report examines varying opinion in regards to Scotland's Independence Referendum. The report also discusses U.S. views on the topic.
Al Qaeda-Affiliated Groups: Middle East and Africa
This report focuses on Al Qaeda affiliates, or groups that have publicly sworn allegiance to Al Qaeda leadership and been formally accepted as affiliates. This includes Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the Nusrah Front, and Al Shabaab. This report also profiles a selection of other groups that are not Al Qaeda affiliates but may have organizational links or ideological similarities with Al Qaeda or its affiliates and pose a credible threat to the United States or to U.S. interests.
The "Khorasan Group" in Syria
This report briefly discusses the Syria-based terrorists referred to as the "Khorasan Group" and the U.S. airstrikes conducted against them in late September 2014.
Extradition To and From the United States: Overview of the Law and Recent Treaties
"Extradition" is the formal surrender of a person by a State to another State for prosecution or punishment. Extradition to or from the United States is a creature of treaty. The United States has extradition treaties with over a hundred of the nations of the world. International terrorism and drug trafficking have made extradition an increasingly important law enforcement tool. This is a brief overview of federal law in the area and of the adjustments in recent treaties to make them more responsive to American law enforcement interests.
Director of National Intelligence Statutory Authorities: Status and Proposals
This report discusses the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) position created by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458). It includes an overview of the authorities granted to the DNI by legislation in 2004 and later as well as the varying opinions of Congress regarding new DNI authorities, as well as related legislation from FY2010 through FY2012.
A Shift in the International Security Environment: Potential Implications for Defense-Issues for Congress
This report discusses the changing international security environment and how the new realities should effect U.S. defense spending and strategy.
Terrorism: Near Eastern Groups and State Sponsors, 2001
No Description Available.
Terrorism: Near Eastern Groups and State Sponsors, 2002
No Description Available.
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report looks at instances of trafficking in persons (TIP) in Latin America. It looks at current legislation in the U.S. to combat this problem.
Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) Negotiations: Overview and Issues for Congress
The purpose of the ongoing Trade in Services (TiSA) negotiations is to build on those rules by further increasing liberalization among the 23 negotiating parties, including the United States and European Union (EU), to open markets to foreign service providers and enhance rules governing services trade. This report provides a brief overview of U.S. trade in services, background on services in U.S. trade agreements, and an in-depth discussion of the ongoing TiSA negotiations.
Border Security Metrics Between Ports of Entry
This report provides background and information about performance and operational metrics related to U.S. border security as well as issues for Congressional consideration.
U.S. Embassy in Iraq
This report discusses issues with the U.S. Embassy in Iraq such as the potential rising cost, delay in opening, quality of construction, and reported assertions of trafficking-like labor practices by First Kuwaiti General Trade and Contracting Company, the primary builder of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.
Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank
This report discusses a new development bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), launched by China that is posing a challenge to U.S. policymakers.
Stafford Act Assistance and Acts of Terrorism
This report provides a brief overview of Stafford Act declarations under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act and the types of assistance they could authorize in response to terrorist incidents. This report also provides examples of Stafford Act declarations that have been issued for previous terrorist attacks.
The Islamic State's Acolytes and the Challenges They Pose to U.S. Law Enforcement
This report provides an analysis of publicly available information on homegrown violent jihadist activity in the United States since September 11, 2001, which suggests that the Islamic State (IS) and its acolytes may pose broad challenges to domestic law enforcement and homeland security efforts.
Climate Change Paris Agreement Opens for Signature
This report discusses the new international Paris Agreement, signed by 175 out of 196 Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change on April 22, 2016 to address greenhouse-gas-induced climate change.
Counting Casualties in Syria and Iraq: Process and Challenges
This report discusses the difficulties of collecting war-related casualty data in Iraq and Syria and provides an overview of some of the current estimated figures available through selected organizations.
The Pacific Alliance: A Trade Integration Initiative in Latin America
This report provides an overview of the structure of the Pacific Alliance, events leading up to its creation, and the economic significance of the Member countries.
The Islamic State's Acolytes and the Challenges They Pose to U.S. Law Enforcement
This report discusses an analysis of publicly available information on homegrown violent jihadist activity in the United States since September 11, 2001, which suggests that the Islamic State (IS) and its acolytes may pose broad challenges to domestic law enforcement and homeland security efforts.
U.S.- Thailand Free Trade Agreement Negotiations
This report examines Thailand’s economy and trade orientation, the scope and significance of the U.S.-Thai commercial relationship, and the likely top issues in the negotiations. The report concludes with a short summary of the Congressional role and interest in the FTA.
European Security and Islamist Terrorism
This report briefly discusses the current security climate in Europe, as well as policy considerations for the U.S. Over the last two years, European governments and the European Union (EU) have grown increasingly alarmed by the rise of the Islamic State terrorist organization, its ability to attract European citizens to join the fighting in the Syria-Iraq region, and its use of violent extremist propaganda to inspire others.
Foreign Aid and the Education Sector: Programs and Priorities
This report is a descriptive profile of recent U.S. foreign aid education sector activities; it outlines actors, policy, funding levels, and programs.
EU State Aid and Apple's Taxes
This report discusses the recent investigations by the European Union (EU) regarding claims that certain countries had provided illegal state aid via favorable tax rulings.
Barriers Along the U.S. Borders: Key Authorities and Requirements
This report discusses key statutory authorities and requirements governing the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) construction of barriers along the U.S. borders. It also includes appendixes listing federal laws that have been waived by DHS in furtherance of border construction projects.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
This report provides an overview of North American trade liberalization before NAFTA, an overview of NAFTA provisions, the economic effects of NAFTA, and policy considerations.
European Security and Islamist Terrorism
This report briefly discusses the current security climate in Europe, as well as policy considerations for the U.S. Over the last two years, European governments and the European Union (EU) have grown increasingly alarmed by the rise of the Islamic State terrorist organization, its ability to attract European citizens to join the fighting in the Syria-Iraq region, and its use of violent extremist propaganda to inspire others.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
This report provides an overview of North American trade liberalization before NAFTA, an overview of NAFTA provisions, the economic effects of NAFTA, and policy considerations.
North American Free Trade Agreement: Notification for Renegotiation
This report discusses the fate of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) after the Trump Administration sent a 90-day notification to Congress of its intent to begin talks with Canada and Mexico to renegotiate NAFTA.
State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs: FY2010 Budget and Appropriations
The annual State, Foreign Operations, and Related Agencies appropriations bill is the primary legislative vehicle through which Congress reviews the U.S. international affairs budget and influences executive branch foreign policy making in general. On May 7, 2009, President Obama submitted a budget proposal for FY2010 that requests $53.9 billion for the international affairs budget. This report analyzes the FY2010 request, recent-year funding trends, and congressional action for FY2010. To date, this includes the introduction and committee approval of H.R. 3081, the House State-Foreign Operations Appropriations bill for FY2010.
U.S. Trade and Investment Relations with sub-Saharan Africa and the African Growth and Opportunity Act
Report that examines African economic trends and U.S. trade and investment flows with SSA. It discusses the provisions of AGOA and the changes that have occurred since its enactment. It concludes with a brief discussion of issues for Congress.
United Nations System Funding: Congressional Issues
Report that tracks the process by which Congress provides the funding for U.S. assessed contributions to the regular budgets of the United Nations, its agencies, and U.N. peacekeeping operation accounts, as well as for U.S. voluntary contributions to U.N. system programs and funds.
U. N. Development Program: A Fact Sheet
The U.N. Development Program (UNDP) coordinates and provides funding for most U.N. development assistance programs. In FY1994, the U.S. contribution of $116 million made the United States the largest donor, comprising about 12 percent of the agency's budget.
Interrogation of Detainees: Overview of the McCain Amendment
Controversy has arisen regarding U.S. treatment of enemy combatants and terrorist suspects detained in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations, and whether such treatment complies with related U.S. statutes and treaties. Certain provisions of the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA), first introduced by Senator John McCain, have popularly been referred to as the "McCain Amendment." This report discusses the McCain amendment and the application of the McCain amendment by the Department of Defense (DOD) in the updated 2006 version of the Army Field Manual.