Congressional Research Service Reports - 10 Matching Results

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The War Crimes Act: Current Issues

Description: This report discusses current issues related to the War Crimes Act of 1996 and Common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, which sets out minimum standards for the treatment of detainees in armed conflicts "not of an international character (e.g., civil wars, rebellions, and other conflicts between State and non-State actors).
Date: January 22, 2009
Creator: Garcia, Michael J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Congress and U.S. Policy on North Korean Human Rights and Refugees: Recent Legislation and Implementation

Description: The passage of the reauthorization of the North Korean Human Rights Act in October 2008 reasserted congressional interest in influencing the Bush Administration's policy toward North Korea. In addition to reauthorizing funding at original levels, the bill expresses congressional criticism of the implementation of the original 2004 law and adjusts some of the provisions relating to the Special Envoy on Human Rights in North Korea and the U.S. resettlement of North Korean refugees. Some outside analysts have pointed to the challenges of highlighting North Korea's human rights violations in the midst of the ongoing nuclear negotiations, as well as the difficulty in effectively reaching North Korean refugees as outlined in the law. Further, the law may complicate coordination on North Korea with China and South Korea.
Date: October 22, 2008
Creator: Chanlett-Avery, Emma
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Amendments: 109th Congress

Description: Enacted in 1966, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) was designed to enable any person -- individual or corporate, regardless of citizenship -- to request, without explanation or justification, presumptive access to existing, identifiable, unpublished, executive branch agency records on any topic. The statute specified nine categories of information that may be permissibly exempted from the rule of disclosure. Disputes over the accessibility of requested records could be ultimately settled in court. The statute has become a somewhat popular tool of inquiry and information gathering for various quarters of American society. This report details the history of the Act, as well as relevant legislation and incidences and the efforts to amend the Act.
Date: September 22, 2006
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Condemnation of Private Property for Economic Development: Legal Comments on the House-Passed Bill (H.R. 4128) and Bond Amendment

Description: The prohibition on economic development condemnations extends not only to land taken for the explicit purpose of economic development but also to land subsequently so used. The latter coverage raises the possibility that although a parcel was initially condemned for a non-prohibited purpose, its use years later for a prohibited one would trigger the two-year cut-off of federal funds. Nor does there seem to be any proportionality requirement between the prohibited condemnations and the length and scope of the federal funds suspension. If Congress’ Spending Power includes a proportionality requirement for conditions on federal funds, as the Court suggests, the absence of proportionality in some of the bill’s applications may raise a constitutional issue.
Date: December 22, 2005
Creator: Meltz, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Detainees at Guantànamo Bay

Description: After the U.S. Supreme Court held that U.S. courts have jurisdiction to hear legal challenges on behalf of more than 500 persons detained at the U.S. Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in connection with the war against terrorism, the Pentagon established administrative hearings, called “Combatant Status Review Tribunals” (CSRTs), to allow the detainees to contest their status as enemy combatants. This report provides an overview of the CSRT procedures and summarizes court cases related to the detentions.
Date: June 22, 2005
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

9/11 Commission Recommendations: A Civil Liberties Oversight Board

Description: This report discusses the recommendation made by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9/11 Commission) regarding the creation of a board within the executive branch to oversee adherence to guidelines on, and the commitment to defend, civil liberties by the federal government.
Date: December 22, 2004
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wireless Privacy and Spam: Issues for Congress

Description: Wireless communications devices such as cell phones and personal digital assistants (PDAs) are ubiquitous. Some consumers, already deluged with unwanted commercial messages, or “spam,” via computers that access the Internet by traditional wireline connections, are concerned that such unsolicited advertising is expanding to wireless communications, further eroding their privacy. Congress continues to debate how to protect wireless subscribers further, and several bills were considered in the 108th Congress.
Date: December 22, 2004
Creator: Smith, Marcia S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department