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Iran Sanctions

Description: There appears to be a growing international consensus to adopt progressively strict economic sanctions against Iran to try to compel it to compromise on its further nuclear development. The U.S. view - increasingly shared by major allies-is that sanctions should target Iran's energy sector, which provides about 80% of government revenues, and try to isolate Iran from the international financial system. U.S. efforts to curb international energy investment in Iran's energy sector began in 1996 with the Iran Sanctions Act (ISA). ISA has been expanded significantly in 2010. This report discusses said expansions, provides background on the ISA, and explores how this Act has affected
Date: October 7, 2010
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Russian Political, Economic, and Security Issues and U.S. Interests

Description: This report discusses the current political and economic conditions in Russia, focusing on the impact of Vladimir Putin's leadership and the leadership of his successor/protégé, Dmitriy Medvedev, both of which have steered Russia away from progress toward democratization. The report also discusses the state of the economy since the Soviet collapse in 1999, how the recent global economic downturn has affected Russia, the state of Russia's military, and the current relationship between Russia and the United States.
Date: November 4, 2010
Creator: Nichol, Jim
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Japan-U.S. Relations: Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the relationship between the United States and Japan, including Japanese efforts to support the U.S. in the wake of the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks and the two countries' economic ties, especially with regards to the recent economic downturn. This report also discusses the general political atmosphere of Japan, including the recent and ongoing political turmoil in Tokyo.
Date: October 6, 2010
Creator: Chanlett-Avery, Emma; Cooper, William H. & Manyin, Mark E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The European Parliament

Description: The European Parliament (EP) is one of the three key institutions of the European Union (EU), and the only EU institution whose members are directly elected. This report discusses the construction and history of the EP, its role in functions of the EU as well as internationally, various international supports and criticisms of the EP, and the EP's ties with the U.S. Congress.
Date: November 5, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin & Mix, Derek E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance

Description: This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, as well as the Afghan government. This report also discusses Afghanistan's relationship with the United States, particularly U.S. efforts to urge President Hamid Karzai, to address corruption within the Afghan government. The report also includes discussion of election fraud and corruption in Afghanistan.
Date: October 13, 2010
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Iraq: Politics, Elections, and Benchmarks

Description: Iraq's political system, the result of a U.S.-supported election process, has been increasingly characterized by peaceful competition, as well as by attempts to form cross-sectarian alliances. However, ethnic and factional infighting continues, sometimes involving the questionable use of key levers of power and legal institutions. This report discusses the current political climate of Iraq and also explores speculations as to what will happen after U.S. troops completely withdraw from the region at the end of 2011.
Date: October 4, 2010
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Kurds in Post-Saddam Iraq

Description: The Kurdish-inhabited region of northern Iraq is relatively peaceful and prospering economically, but the Iraqi Kurds' political autonomy and political strength in post- Saddam Iraq is causing friction with Arab leaders in Iraq, Turkey, and Iran. However, an overall reduction in violence in Iraq, coupled with continued U.S. political influence over the Kurds, is likely to prevent a destabilizing escalation of the Iraqi Kurd-Arab disputes. Also see CRS Report RL31339, Iraq: Post-Saddam Governance and Security, by Kenneth Katzman.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The European Union: Questions and Answers

Description: This report provides a brief overview of the European Union (EU), an economic and political partnership between 27 sovereign member states. The report describes the formation of the EU, the three main institutions of the EU, and the EU's relationship with the United States.
Date: November 5, 2010
Creator: Archick, Kristin & Mix, Derek E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

China's Currency: An Analysis of the Economic Issues

Description: This report provides an overview of the economic issues surrounding the current debate over China's currency policy. It identifies the economic costs and benefits of China's currency policy for both China and the United States, and possible implications if China were to allow its currency to significantly appreciate or to float freely. It also examines proposed legislation in the 111th Congress that seek to address China's currency policy.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Morrison, Wayne M. & Labonte, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

China's Currency: An Analysis of the Economic Issues

Description: This report provides an overview of the economic issues surrounding the current debate over China's currency policy. It identifies the economic costs and benefits of China's currency policy for both China and the United States, and possible implications if China were to allow its currency to significantly appreciate or to float freely. It also examines proposed legislation in the 111th Congress that seek to address China's currency policy.
Date: October 29, 2010
Creator: Morrison, Wayne M. & Labonte, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Nuclear Cooperation with India: Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the United States' relationship with India as it regards nuclear nonproliferation and cooperation. In particular, the report discusses the Atomic Energy Act, which President Bush signed into law on December 18, 2006, and which governs U.S. nuclear cooperation. The report also discusses other related legislation as well as issues regarding U.S. nuclear trade with India.
Date: October 28, 2010
Creator: Kerr, Paul K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Nuclear Cooperation with India: Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the United States' relationship with India as it relates to nuclear arsenals and nuclear nonproliferation policies. The report includes background information on India's nuclear history and nuclear weapons-specific U.S. legislation.
Date: September 30, 2010
Creator: Kerr, Paul K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses

Description: Much of the debate over U.S. policy toward Iran has centered on the nature of the current regime; some believe that Iran, a country of about 70 million people, is a threat to U.S. interests because hardliners in Iran's regime dominate and set a policy direction intended to challenge U.S. influence and allies in the region. President George W. Bush, in his January 29, 2002, State of the Union message, labeled Iran part of an "axis of evil" along with Iraq and North Korea.
Date: September 22, 2010
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Indonesia: Domestic Politics, Strategic Dynamics, and U.S. Interests

Description: This report explores the current political conditions of Indonesia, as well as its relationship with surrounding nations and its relationship with the United States, including a focus on U.S. policy regarding Indonesia. The report also focuses on how the election of President Barack Obama increased Indonesian expectations of an improved relationship with the U.S., as President Obama spent part of his childhood in Indonesia.
Date: October 27, 2010
Creator: Vaughn, Bruce
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S.-Russian Civilian Nuclear Cooperation Agreement: Issues for Congress

Description: The United States and Russia signed a civilian nuclear cooperation agreement on May 6, 2008. President Bush submitted the agreement to Congress on May 13. This report discusses key policy issues related to that agreement, including future nuclear energy cooperation with Russia, U.S.-Russian bilateral relations, nonproliferation cooperation and Russia's policies toward Iran.
Date: September 17, 2010
Creator: Nikitin, Mary Beth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

India-U.S. Relations

Description: This report focuses on relations between the United States and India, a relationship deepened in the Clinton and G. W. Bush Administrations. The Obama Administrations seeks to continue developing this relationship. Continuing U.S. interest in South Asia focuses on ongoing tensions between India and Pakistan, the proliferation of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles, human rights issues, caste-based discrimination, and India's economic expansion.
Date: October 27, 2010
Creator: Kronstadt, K. Alan; Kerr, Paul K.; Martin, Michael F. & Vaughn, Bruce
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Sudan: The Crisis in Darfur and Status of the North-South Peace Agreement

Description: Sudan, geographically the largest country in Africa, has been ravaged by civil war intermittently for four decades, resulting in catastrophic civilian casualties and displacements. This report discusses the history of Sudan's civil unrest and the subsequent crisis in Darfur, as well as United Nations and United States aid and peacekeeping efforts and current related policy under the Obama Administration.
Date: October 8, 2010
Creator: Dagne, Ted
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. International Trade: Trends and Forecasts

Description: This report discusses the U.S. trade deficit in light of the 2008 global financial crisis, with emphasis on international trade and U.S. trade policy, most recent developments in trade of goods and service, trade forecasts for the future, and how issues such as the U.S. trade deficit and international trade, particularly with China, are commonly perceived.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Nanto, Dick K. & Donnelly, J. Michael
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Proposed U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement

Description: The proposed U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement, also called the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), is a bilateral free trade agreement between the United States and Colombia which, if ratified, would eliminate tariffs and other barriers in goods and services between the two countries. The CFTA negotiations grew out of a regional effort in 2004 to produce a U.S.-Andean free trade agreement (FTA) between the United States and the Andean countries of Colombia, Peru, and Ecuador. In his January 2010 State of the Union address, President Barack Obama called for a new National Export Initiative (NEI) to boost U.S. exports and create jobs. One component of the NEI calls for opening new markets for U.S. exports by resolving outstanding issues with Colombia, Korea, and Panama with the objective of moving forward with the pending FTAs at the appropriate time. There is currently no indication that the 111th Congress will consider implementing legislation for the proposed U.S.-Colombia FTA.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Villarreal, M. Angeles
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S.-South Korea Beef Dispute: Issues and Status

Description: This report describes the beef provisions in the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) and the separate bilateral protocols that the United States has negotiated in order to secure the lifting of South Korea's ban on U.S. beef imports, imposed after the discovery of mad cow disease in late 2003. It also summarizes U.S. beef export developments to this key market before and after the ban and since these protocols took effect; and lays out the outstanding issues on U.S. beef access that will likely need to be resolved to facilitate congressional consideration of the KORUS FTA.
Date: September 23, 2010
Creator: Jurenas, Remy & Manyin, Mark E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Kenya: Current Conditions and the Challenges Ahead

Description: This report discusses the current political conditions of Kenya, which has long been an important ally of the United States. The report focuses particularly on the December 2007 elections, which many international observers have declared as rigged and deeply flawed. The report also discusses violence that erupted once election results were announced, as well as U.S. efforts to urge Kenya toward election reforms.
Date: October 6, 2010
Creator: Dagne, Ted
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Yemen: Background and U.S. Relations

Description: With limited natural resources, a crippling illiteracy rate, and high population growth, Yemen faces an array of daunting development challenges that some observers believe make it at risk for becoming a failed state in the next few decades. As the country's population rapidly rises, resources dwindle, and terrorist groups take root in the outlying provinces, the Obama Administration and the 111th Congress are left to grapple with the consequences of Yemeni instability. As President Obama and the 111th Congress reassess U.S. policy toward the Arab world, the opportunity for improved U.S.-Yemeni ties is strong, though recurring tensions over counterterrorism cooperation and lack of U.S. interest in Yemen within the broader foreign policy community persist.
Date: November 1, 2010
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations

Description: This report provides an overview of Jordanian politics and current issues in U.S.-Jordanian relations. It provides a brief discussion of Jordan's government and economy and of its cooperation in promoting Arab-Israeli peace and other U.S. policy objectives in the Middle East.
Date: October 14, 2010
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department