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India likely to contribute $500,000 to UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF)

CERF provides early funding when humanitarian crises break out and supports essential relief operations that are poorly funded

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United Nations, December 14, 2016: India will contribute $500,000 to the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), Indian diplomat Anjani Kumar has announced at the high level pledging conference here.

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Kumar, a counsellor at India’s UN Mission, said on Tuesday that this contribution for the year 2016-17 and New Delhi’s cumulative contribution since the fund was launched in 2006 stood at $6 million.

“Despite our own resource constraints, India has always been forthcoming within its ability and national circumstances in offering humanitarian assistance as per the needs and requests of our friends and partners,” Kumar said.

“These efforts have ranged from immediate supply of relief materials to emergency evacuation of very large number of persons of various nationalities from danger zones.”

CERF provides early funding when humanitarian crises break out and supports essential relief operations that are poorly funded.

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At the pledging session on Tuesday, 29 countries promised contributions totalling $273 million to the CERF after outgoing Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made a plea for funds.

“The scale of humanitarian deprivation is greater than at any time since the UN was founded,” he said. “A record 130 million people need humanitarian assistance to survive.”

Ban asked the CREF to raise its annual target of $450 million to $1 billion by 2018.

CERF has provided $4.6 billion in emergency assistance to 98 countries since it was founded.

So far this year it has provided emergency help to about 50 countries. (IANS)

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USA: Everything you want to know about Security Clearance; Find out here!

A security clearance allows a person access to classified national security information or restricted areas.

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Former CIA Director John O. Brennan speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, March 11, 2014. President Donald Trump revoked Brennan's security clearance Wednesday. VOA
Former CIA Director John O. Brennan speaks at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, March 11, 2014. President Donald Trump revoked Brennan's security clearance Wednesday. VOA

U.S. President Donald Trump on Wednesday revoked the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan. We take a look at what that means.

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A security clearance allows a person access to classified national security information or restricted areas after completion of a background check. The clearance by itself does not guarantee unlimited access. The agency seeking the clearance must determine what specific area of information the person needs to access.

What are the different levels of security clearance?

There are three levels: Confidential, secret and top secret. Security clearances don’t expire. But, top secret clearances are reinvestigated every five years, secret clearances every 10 years and confidential clearances every 15 years.

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Why does one need a security clearance in retirement?

Retired senior intelligence officials and military officers need their security clearances in case they are called to consult on sensitive issues.

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Apparently. But there is no precedent for a president revoking someone’s security clearance. A security clearance is usually revoked by the agency that sought it for an employee or contractor. All federal agencies follow a list of 13 potential justifications for revoking or denying a clearance, which can include criminal acts, lack of allegiance to the United States, behavior or situation that could compromise an individual and security violations. (VOA)