Sunday February 17, 2019
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US, Cuba in the same room after more than 50 years

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

US President Barack Obama, while addressing the Summit of the Latin and North American leaders in Panama City said, “The Cuba policy shift marks a “turning point” for the region.

“The fact that President Castro and I are both sitting here today marks a historic occasion,’ Obama said.

The US leader agreed to have disagreements on the issue of negotiating diplomatic issues since 1961 between the countries.

“I think it’s no secret, President Castro I’m sure would agree, that there will continue to be significant differences between our two countries,” the US President added.

“We will continue to speak out on behalf of universal values that we think are important. I’m sure President Castro will continue to speak out on the issues he thinks are important,” said Obama.

Moreover, the US President has not yet decided on whether to remove Cuba from State Sponsors of Terrorism List.

He mentioned that Cuba is not a threat to the US. “We are not in the business of regime change and the Cold War on Cuba is over.”

However, the US State Department has completed the review of Cuba’s status and recommended the White House to remove Cuba from State Sponsors of Terrorism List.

The summit was the very first face-to-face meet between the two nations after they have started working on maintaining the relations since December 2014.

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Donald Trump to Declare ‘Emergency’, Use Military Funds for Mexico Border Wall

He will sign a border security bill to avert a government shutdown, but also act to bypass Congress and use military funds for the wall, a statement said.

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Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump will declare a national emergency to fund his planned border wall with Mexico, the White House has said. Pixabay

US President Donald Trump will declare a national emergency to fund his planned border wall with Mexico, the White House has said.

He will sign a border security bill to avert a government shutdown, but also act to bypass Congress and use military funds for the wall, a statement said.

Senior Democrats have responded by accusing him of committing a “gross abuse of power” and a “lawless act”, the BBC reported on Friday.

The Congress passed the bill on Thursday which does not meet Trump’s demands for wall funding. It now has to be signed by the President to become law.

 

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Senior Democrats have responded by accusing him of committing a “gross abuse of power” and a “lawless act”. VOA

The compromise legislation passed by Congress includes $1.3 billion in funding for border security, including physical barriers, but it does not allot money towards the border wall for which Trump had wanted $5.7 billion.

“The President is once again delivering on his promise to build the wall, protect the border, and secure our great country,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement on Thursday.

She added he would “take other executive action – including a national emergency – to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border”.

Speaking on the Senate floor on Thursday, however, Republican leader Mitch McConnell indicated his support for the move, saying the President was taking action with “whatever tools he can legally use to enhance his efforts to secure the border”.

In a 83-16 vote, the Senate on Thursday passed the border security bill. The House of Representatives later also backed the measure, by 300 to 128.

 

US, Donald Trump
“The President is once again delivering on his promise to build the wall, protect the border, and secure our great country,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said. VOA

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has already suggested a legal challenge from Democrats should the President make an emergency declaration.

She and Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer also issued a joint statement condemning the move.

 

ALSO READ: Mexico Announced to Relocate Central American Migrants, 4 People Injured

“Declaring a national emergency would be a lawless act, a gross abuse of the power of the presidency and a desperate attempt to distract from the fact that President Trump broke his core promise to have Mexico pay for his wall,” they said.

Republicans fear this will set a precedent for presidential power that Democrats can someday use to circumvent the will of Congress. (IANS)