January 20, 2022

News

News Network

Deputy Secretary Biegun’s Call with Minister Kyaw Tin of Burma

12 min read

Office of the Spokesperson

The below is attributable to Principal Deputy Spokesperson Cale Brown:

As part of the United States’ ongoing and high-level engagement with the leaders and people of Burma, Deputy Secretary of State Stephen R. Biegun spoke with Union Minister for International Cooperation Kyaw Tin of Burma to express support for the country’s ongoing democratic transition and the advancement of peace and national reconciliation, respect for human rights, and inclusive economic development.

Deputy Secretary Biegun and Minister Kyaw Tin also discussed efforts to address ongoing violence, humanitarian, and human rights concerns, including those affecting the Rohingya, while strengthening economic ties and deepening our long-standing partnership with Burma.

More from: Office of the Spokesperson

News Network

  • Judicial and Legislative Branches to Continue Discussions on Judiciary Case Management Bill
    In U.S Courts
    The Judicial Conference of the United States expressed its opposition to the version of a bill passed by the House this week, saying it “will have devastating budgetary and operational impact on the Judiciary and our ability to serve the public” by imposing radical and costly changes on the Third Branch’s electronic case management system without adequate funding.
    [Read More…]
  • Arkansas Man Charged in $100 Million COVID-19 Health Care Fraud Scheme
    In Crime News
    A federal grand jury in the Western District of Arkansas returned an indictment yesterday charging an Arkansas man who owned or managed numerous diagnostic testing laboratories with health care fraud in connection with over $100 million dollars in false billings for urine drug testing, COVID-19 testing, and other clinical laboratory services.
    [Read More…]
  • Statement of Acting Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen on the Death of U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian D. Sicknick
    In Crime News
    Acting Attorney General Jeffrey A. Rosen issued the following statement:
    [Read More…]
  • Secretary Antony J. Blinken and President of Palau Surangel Whipps, Jr. Before Their Meeting
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Antony J. Blinken, [Read More…]
  • Thirteen Charged in Federal Court Following Riot at the United States Capitol
    In Crime News
    Thirteen individuals have been charged so far in federal court in the District of Columbia related to crimes committed at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C, on Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021. In addition to those who have been charged, additional complaints have been submitted and investigations are ongoing.
    [Read More…]
  • Public Designation of Former Namibian Public Officials for Involvement in Significant Corruption
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • VA Health Care: Preliminary Findings on the Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care Budget Formulation for Fiscal Years 2005 and 2006
    In U.S GAO News
    This report documents the information we provided to Congress in a briefing on February 2, 2006, in response to a request concerning the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) internal budget formulation process. This includes information that VA develops for its budget submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), but it does not include information on subsequent interactions that occur between VA and OMB. We will do additional work to incorporate information from OMB and complete our analysis in a report to be issued at a later date. Congress requested information on VA's budget formulation process because of its interest in ensuring that VA's budget forecasts are accurate and based on valid patient estimates. In response to the request for information on VA's internal budget formulation process, this report provides the following for fiscal years 2005 and 2006: (1) a description of VA's process for developing its budget submission to OMB for its medical programs, and the role of VA's actuarial model; (2) a description of the medical program activities cited by VA as needing additional funding, and how VA identified these activities; and (3) key factors in VA's budget formulation process that contributed to the requests for additional funding.VA's internal process for formulating the medical programs funding requests was informed by, but not driven by, projected demand. VA projected costs based on projected demand for medical care under current policy. Throughout the process, VA compared projected costs to its anticipated request level for the OMB submission and made adjustments to address the difference. VA officials stated that this was done in two ways: through cost-saving policy proposals, such as assessing an annual health care enrollment fee, and management efficiencies. After making adjustments to address the difference between projected costs and its anticipated request level, VA developed its budget submission for OMB. VA later cited a number of activities as needing additional funding based on programmatic priorities and an analysis of expenditure data. Among the activities that were cited for fiscal year 2005 was $273 million for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan; $226 million for long-term care; and almost $400 million for increases in the number of patients, as well as increases in both utilization and intensity of care. For the fiscal year 2006 budget, VA cited $677 million to cover a 2 percent increase in the number of patients, $600 million to correct VA's estimate for long-term care costs, $400 million for an unexpected 1.2 percent increase in average cost per patient, and $300 million to replace funds VA planned to carry over from fiscal year 2005 to fiscal year 2006. VA officials said that they chose to highlight activities that were of high programmatic priority and could be supported by workload and expenditure data (e.g. veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan). They also reviewed spending and workload trends to determine whether spending trends were on target or whether adjustments were needed. An unrealistic assumption, errors in estimation, and insufficient data were key factors in VA's budget formulation process that contributed to the requests for additional funding. According to VA, an unrealistic assumption about the speed with which VA could implement a policy to reduce nursing home patient workload in VA-operated nursing homes for fiscal year 2005 led to a need for additional funds. VA officials told us that errors in estimating the effect of a nursing home policy to reduce workload in all three of its nursing home settings--VA-operated nursing homes, community nursing homes, and state veterans' nursing homes--accounted for a request for additional funding for fiscal year 2006. VA officials said that the error resulted from calculations being made in haste during the OMB appeal process. Finally, VA officials told us that insufficient data on certain activities contributed to the requests for additional funds for both years. For example, inadequate data on veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan resulted in an underestimate in the initial funding request.
    [Read More…]
  • Member of Neo-Nazi Group Sentenced for Plot to Target Journalists and Advocates
    In Crime News
    Johnny Roman Garza, 21, a member of the Neo-Nazi group Atomwaffen Division, was sentenced today to 16 months in prison and three years of supervised release for his role in a plot to threaten and intimidate journalists and advocates who worked to expose anti-Semitism.
    [Read More…]
  • [Protest of AID Contract Award for Administrative, Technical, and Program Support]
    In U.S GAO News
    A firm protested an Agency for International Development (AID) contract award for administrative, technical, and program support, contending that AID: (1) improperly based its cost realism analysis on predecessor contracts that had dissimilar work requirements; (2) should have upwardly adjusted the awardee's proposed costs for travel and the use of consultants because they were unrealistically low; and (3) should have awarded it the contract, since its combined evaluation score was higher than the awardee's evaluation score. GAO held that: (1) AID reasonably based its cost realism analysis on the predecessor contracts, since they were substantially similar in scope to the instant procurement; (2) the protester failed to present any evidence that the awardee's proposed costs were unrealistically low; (3) AID reasonably evaluated the protester's proposed costs; and (4) AID properly made award to the low bidder, since the bidders' proposals were technically equal. Accordingly, the protest was denied.
    [Read More…]
  • Attacks on Civilians in Syria
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Ned Price, Department [Read More…]
  • Federal Spending Transparency: Opportunities Exist for Treasury to Further Improve USAspending.gov’s Use and Usefulness
    In U.S GAO News
    What GAO Found Federal spending data websites let users search, download, and analyze how the U.S. government spends public funds. Users GAO interviewed—representing the public, recipients of federal funds, and federal agencies, among others—identified a variety of uses for, and challenges with, these websites (see figure). The Department of the Treasury has collected website user feedback through various channels including usability testing sessions and an online community forum. In response to that input, Treasury officials have added information on unreported data to, created a data dictionary for, and provided additional file formats for downloads on their spending data websites. Consistent with user-centered website design principles, Treasury identified specific types of expected users through the development of user “personas”—such as citizens and recipients—each with different interests and needs. However, GAO's analysis found limited evidence that Treasury targeted USAspending.gov training toward these personas. GAO also found that Treasury generally did not target promotion efforts to these personas. Without taking these steps, Treasury may miss opportunities to encourage greater use of the website or properly address the needs of the different types of users. Website users also reported difficulties locating disclosures of data limitations on USAspending.gov. This information is typically unavailable on or near the pages where users are searching for, or viewing, the data. In addition, GAO found that USAspending.gov does not include a site search function that could be used to more easily locate information on data limitations. If users cannot easily locate data limitation disclosures, they could inadvertently draw inaccurate conclusions from the data or lose confidence in them. Why GAO Did This Study In fiscal year 2020, the federal government spent $7.4 trillion. USAspending.gov, the Data Lab website, and PandemicOversight.gov provide key information on this spending. Congress included a provision for GAO to review implementation of the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014, which requires federal reporting of spending data. This report examines (1) user perspectives on useful activities for, and challenges with, these websites; (2) the extent to which information on use and usability of the USAspending.gov and Data Lab websites informs updates of their design and operation; and (3) the extent to which Treasury has addressed challenges regarding the awareness of, and data limitation disclosures on, USAspending.gov. For this report, GAO collected user input from a nongeneralizable sample of 63 individuals and organizations using a snowball sampling technique. This allowed GAO to identify contacts through referrals, and additional information from a projectable sample of federal managers who were familiar with USAspending.gov. GAO also analyzed documents, compared Treasury actions with guidance and good practices, and interviewed agency officials.
    [Read More…]
  • Court Orders Georgia Defendants to Stop Selling Vitamin D Products as Treatments for Covid-19 and Other Diseases
    In Crime News
    A federal court entered a permanent injunction barring a Georgia company from selling unapproved vitamin D products touted as treatments for COVID-19, the Department of Justice announced today.
    [Read More…]
  • Project Monitor and Abatement Supervisor Plead Guilty To Conspiring to Violate Asbestos Regulations
    In Crime News
    Two individuals pleaded guilty today to conspiring to violate federal and New York State regulations intended to prevent human exposure to asbestos.
    [Read More…]
  • Crane company agrees to pay more than $4.5M to resolve lawsuit for non-compliance with Military Specifications
    In Justice News
    Crane Company has agreed [Read More…]
  • Toyota Motor Company to Pay $180 Million in Settlement for Decade-Long Noncompliance with Clean Air Act Reporting Requirements
    In Crime News
    The U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that the United States has filed and simultaneously settled a civil lawsuit against Toyota Motor Corporation, Toyota Motor North America Inc., Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc., and Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America Inc. (Toyota) for systematic, longstanding violations of Clean Air Act emission-related defect reporting requirements, which require manufacturers to report potential defects and recalls affecting vehicle components designed to control emissions.
    [Read More…]
  • Assessing the National Security Law in Hong Kong
    In Climate - Environment - Conservation
    Jonathan Fritz, Deputy [Read More…]
  • Ongoing Investigation into Violent White Supremacist Gang Results in Rico Indictment and Additional Charges against Members and Associates
    In Crime News
    The Justice Department announced today that additional charges have been brought in a superseding indictment against members and associates of a white supremacist gang known as the 1488s. The 1488s have been charged as a criminal organization that was involved in narcotics distribution, arson, obstruction of justice, and acts of violence including murder, assault, and kidnapping.
    [Read More…]
  • Waste Management: DOD Needs to Fully Assess the Health Risks of Burn Pits
    In U.S GAO News
    What GAO Found GAO reported in September 2016 that the effects from exposing individuals to burn pit emissions were not well understood, and the Department of Defense (DOD) had not fully assessed the health risks associated with the use of burn pits. Burn pits—shallow excavations or surface features with berms used to conduct open-air burning—were often chosen as a method of waste disposal during recent contingency operations in the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) area of responsibility, which extends from the Middle East to Central Asia and includes Iraq and Afghanistan. According to DOD Instruction 6055.01, DOD Safety and Occupational Health (SOH) Program , DOD should apply risk-management strategies to eliminate occupational injury or illness and loss of mission capability or resources. The instruction also requires all DOD components to establish procedures to ensure that risk-acceptance decisions were documented, archived, and reevaluated on a recurring basis. Furthermore, DOD Instruction 6055.05, Occupational and Environmental Health (OEH), requires that hazards be identified and risk evaluated as early as possible, including the consideration of exposure patterns, duration, and rates. While DOD has guidance that applies to burn pit emissions among other health hazards, DOD had not fully assessed the health risks of use of burn pits, according to DOD officials. According to DOD officials, DOD's ability to assess these risks was limited by a lack of adequate information on (1) the levels of exposure to burn pit emissions and (2) the health impacts these exposures had on individuals. With respect to information on exposure levels, DOD had not collected data from emissions or monitored exposures from burn pits as required by its own guidance. Given the potential use of burn pits near installations and during future contingency operations, establishing processes to monitor burn pit emissions for unacceptable exposures would better position DOD and combatant commanders to collect data that could help assess exposure to risks. GAO recommended that the Secretary of Defense (1) take steps to ensure CENTCOM and other geographic combatant commands, as appropriate, establish processes to consistently monitor burn pit emissions for unacceptable exposures; and (2) in coordination with the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, specifically examine the relationship between direct, individual, burn pit exposure and potential long-term health-related issues. DOD concurred with the first recommendation and partially concurred with the second. In a May 2018 status update regarding these recommendations, DOD outlined a series of steps it had implemented as well as steps that it intends to implement. The department believes these efforts will further enhance its ability to better monitor burn-pit emissions and examine the relationship between direct, individual, burn pit exposure and potential long-term health related issues. GAO believes the steps DOD is taking are appropriate. Why GAO Did This Study Burn pits help base commanders manage waste generated by U.S. forces overseas, but they also produce harmful emissions that military and other health professionals believe may result in chronic health effects for those exposed. This statement provides information on the extent to which DOD has assessed any health risks of burn pit use. This statement is based on a GAO report issued in September 2016 (GAO-16-781). The report was conducted in response to section 313 of the Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015. Specifically, GAO assessed the methodology DOD used in conducting a review of the compliance of the military departments and combatant commands with DOD instructions governing the use of burn pits in contingency operations and the adequacy of a DOD report for the defense committees. GAO also obtained updates from DOD on actions taken to assess health risks from burn pits since September 2016.
    [Read More…]
  • Massachusetts Woman Sentenced to Prison on Tax and Drug Charges Arising from Multimillion-Dollar Black Market Marijuana Enterprise
    In Crime News
    A Massachusetts woman was sentenced today to four years in prison for tax evasion, conspiracy to distribute and to possess with intent to distribute 50 kilograms or more of marijuana, possession with intent to distribute marijuana, and money laundering.
    [Read More…]
  • Electrical Engineer Sentenced to More Than Five Years in Prison for Conspiring to Illegally Export to China Semiconductor Chips with Military Uses
    In Crime News
    A California man was sentenced today to 63 months, or more than five years, in prison for his role in a scheme to illegally export integrated circuits with military applications to China the required filing of electronic export information. As part of his sentence, the Judge ordered Shih to pay $362,698 in restitution to the IRS and fined him $300,000.
    [Read More…]

Crime

Network News © 2005 Area.Control.Network™ All rights reserved.