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NIAC Statement on Trump Plans to Renew Iran Sanctions Waivers

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 08:36
National Iranian-American Council

NIAC President Trita Parsi issued the following statement regarding reports that President Trump will extend key sanctions waivers tomorrow as obligated by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), or Iran nuclear deal:

“At first glance, Donald Trump’s anticipated decision to reissue sanctions waivers on Iran comes across as a retreat from his promise to terminate the Iran nuclear deal. In reality, however, he is opting to kill the deal in a less direct way.

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Constitution Pipeline Request Denied by Federal Agency

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 07:52

Yesterday, The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a decision, which spells bad news for the proposed Constitution Pipeline, a 124-mile natural gas pipeline slated to run through New York State and Pennsylvania.

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Thousands Struggle As Fighting Forces People From Their Homes in Northwest Syria

Fri, 01/12/2018 - 07:46
The International Rescue Committee

Thousands that have fled their homes to escape airstrikes and fighting in Idlib are now living in dire conditions, warns the International Rescue Committee (IRC). Around 100,000 people have fled northern Hama province and southern Idlib in recent weeks and some of the most recent arrivals have walked up to seven hours to reach safety, bringing with them only what they could carry.

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Congresswoman Lee Slams Passage of FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act; Calls for Meaningful Reforms to Protect Civil Liberties

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 14:07
Congresswoman Barbara Lee

Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement condemning the passage of the FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act

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Bayou Bridge Fight Heads to Federal Court

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 13:35
Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS)

Representing the interests of the millions of people who use, visit, study and rely on the Atchafalaya Great River Swamp, several groups today asked a Louisiana federal district court to vacate a recent decision by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) that would allow the controversial Bayou Bridge pipeline to be constructed through the Atchafalaya Basin, one of the nation’s ecological crown jewels, and through hundreds of Louisiana’s streams, rivers, lakes, wetlands and bayous.  

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New Study Finds Society Now Saves $6 for Every $1 Spent Preparing for Natural Disasters

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 11:27
Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS)

The National Institute of Building Sciences, a public-private partnership Congress established in 1974, released a new report today titled “Natural Hazard Mitigation Saves,” examining the cost savings of preparing for natural disasters such as hurricanes and wildfires, many of which are worsened by climate change.

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ACLU Condemns House Vote on Surveillance Bill

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 11:24

The House voted today to pass an amended version a surveillance bill that would extend Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Act (FISA). The FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017, or S.139, would risk codifying illegal surveillance practices into law.

Section 702 is used to spy on the emails, text messages, and other electronic communications of Americans and foreigners without a warrant. An amendment sponsored by Reps. Amash (R-Mich.) and Lofgren (D-Calif.) to reform Section 702, which was supported by the ACLU, failed.

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House Votes to Violate the Privacy Rights of Everyone in the United States

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 11:13
Free Press

On Thursday, the House rejected legislation that would have put in place robust privacy protections for people in the United States and Americans abroad, and instead voted to renew a program allowing the government to spy on them without a warrant.

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Medicaid Work Requirements: Cruel, Stupid and Illegal

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 11:10
Public Citizen

Note: The Trump administration has proposed imposing work requirements on Medicaid recipients.

The Trump administration’s new policy of permitting states to impose work requirements for Medicaid eligibility is cruel, stupid and illegal.

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DREAMers + Allies Rally at Schumer’s Office; Demand a Clean DREAM Act in the Federal Budget

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 09:09
The New York Immigration Coalition

On Wednesday, January 10th, the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) and allies joined DREAMers to rally at New York Senator Charles Schumer’s midtown offices, demanding that he include a clean DREAM Act in the federal budget. Co-sponsors included the Asian American Federation, Arab American Association of New York, Chayya Community Development Corporation, CUNY DREAMers, Indivisible Nation BK, MASA, New York DREAMers, New Immigrant Community Empowerment, New York State Immigrant Action Fund, SUNY DREAMers, and 32BJ SEIU.

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Breaking: Immigrant Rights Leader Ravi Ragbir Detained At Immigration Check-In

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:51
The New York Immigration Coalition

What: Emergency rally in support of Ravi Ragbir, Executive Director of New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City

Who: Community members, faith leaders, elected officials, legal advocates

Where: Foley Square, New York, NY, near 26 Federal Plaza

When: NOW

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Veteran Nuclear Launch Officers to Congress: Rein in Trump’s Ability to Launch Nuclear First Strike

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:41
Global Zero

In a new open letter to members of Congress, seventeen former nuclear launch officers issue a grave warning regarding President Trump’s unfettered access to nuclear weapons, declaring that the current U.S. nuclear launch process “poses a clear and present danger to the country and the world: No one — not the secretary of defense, not the attorney general, not Congress — can veto that order. There are no reliable safeguards in place to contain this power.”

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Guantánamo Lawyers File Mass Challenge To Trump's Gitmo Policy

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:38

Human rights organization Reprieve, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), and co-counsel have filed a mass legal challenge to Donald Trump’s continued detention of prisoners at Guantánamo Bay. 

The filing – made on behalf of 11 prisoners, on the 16th anniversary of Guantánamo's opening – argues that the continued detention of people without charge at the prison is unconstitutional, because any legitimate rationale for initially detaining them has long since expired.

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USA: After 16 Years, Close Guantánamo's Detention Center Once and For All

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:26
Amnesty International

On the 16th anniversary of the opening of the notorious detention facility at the US naval base at Guantánamo Bay, Amnesty International is again calling for the fair trial or immediate release of those detained there and closure of the facility.

“Over the years Guantánamo has come to symbolize torture, rendition and indefinite detention without charge or trial – in complete violation of internationally agreed standards of justice and human rights. Its closure is both essential and long overdue,” said Erika Guevara Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

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Gitmo Attorneys File Major New Challenge to Trump’s Guantánamo

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:21
Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR)

Today, on the 16th anniversary of the Guantánamo prison’s opening, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), Reprieve, and co-counsel filed a major challenge to Donald Trump’s continued detention of prisoners at Guantánamo Bay. The collective filing, on behalf of 11 men, argues that Trump’s proclamation against releasing anyone from Guantánamo, regardless of their circumstances, which has borne out for the first full year of the Trump presidency, is arbitrary and unlawful and amounts to “perpetual detention for detention’s sake.”

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Sanders Announces Medicare for All Town Hall With NowThis, The Young Turks, ATTN:

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 08:18
Senator Bernie Sanders

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announced Thursday that he will be partnering with leading digital outlets NowThis, The Young Turks and ATTN: on a groundbreaking Medicare for All national town hall.

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170 Million Americans Drink Radioactive Tap Water

Thu, 01/11/2018 - 06:22
Environmental Working Group (EWG)

Drinking water for more than 170 million Americans in all 50 states contains radioactive elements that may increase the risk of cancer, according to an EWG investigation released today.

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Ellison on FISA Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 13:33
Representative Keith Ellison

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) issued the following statement regarding S. 139, the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) Amendments Reauthorization Act of 2017:

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Floor Actions Demanding Dream Act Vote Disrupt House’s Legislative Day

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 13:13
Luis V. Gutierrez

On Wednesday, three Members of Congress took the unusual step of calling for the House’s adjournment in order to focus attention on the need for the DREAM Act to protect immigrants.  In succession, after delivering one-minute speeches in accordance with House procedures, Reps.

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Myanmar: Military’s Mass Grave Admission Exposes Extrajudicial Executions of Rohingya

Wed, 01/10/2018 - 12:57
Amnesty International

Following today’s admission by Myanmar’s military that security forces and villagers summarily killed 10 captured Rohingya people and buried them in a mass grave outside Inn Din, a village in Maungdaw, Rakhine State, James Gomez, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, said:

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