A U.S. grand jury has stepped up criminal charges against a woman accused of acting as a covert agent for Russia by cultivating ties with U.S. politicians, while Russian officials denounced the case. The U.S. grand jury late on July 17 charged Maria Butina, 29, a student at American University in Washington and founder of a Russian guns rights group, with conspiracy and acting as an agent of the Russian government. The charges against Butina are criminal offenses which carry maximum penalties of up to 10 years in prison, but she has not been charged with espionage or with being a member of a Russian intelligence service. Butina was arrested on July 15 and is scheduled to appear on July 18 in a U.S. court in Washington, the Justice Department said. U.S. prosecutors have accused Butina of cultivating ties with U.S. politicians and political organizations at the direction of a high-level official at the Russian Central Bank who was recently sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury because of his … [Read more...] about U.S. Steps Up Charges Against Alleged Russian ‘Agent’ In Washington
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As a looming deadline approaches for the Iran nuclear deal, there may be a plan to prevent the United States from pulling out of the agreement -- essentially a workaround that would help President Trump deliver on a campaign promise of renegotiating the deal. "Face the Nation" moderator Margaret Brennan reports the U.S. and its European allies would create a proposal that addresses Mr. Trump's concerns about the agreement -- ballistic missiles, military site inspections and the sunset clause -- thus allowing Mr. Trump to claim he "fixed" the 2015 international agreement without actually altering a word of the agreement and without Iran's consent. It would be a workaround to help the U.S. and its allies promise to punish Iran for actions that were not included in the 2015 deal. This plan wouldn't include Russia, China and Iran. The U.K. ambassador to the U.S., Sir Kim Darroch, told "Face the Nation" Sunday that Mr. Trump told British Prime Minister Theresa May there was no decision yet … [Read more...] about Could a workaround help the U.S. stay in Iran nuclear deal?
Still, some migrant advocates have questioned the benefits brought by the caravan. "We don't think it's a really good move," said the Rev. Patrick Murphy, who heads the Catholic-run Casa del Migrante in Tijuana, a 120-bed shelter that overlooks the city. "What happens to those people who have made this journey for quite a few weeks now, and they get rejected, or worse yet, they don't even get their asylum cases heard?" … [Read more...] about Dozens of Central Americans seek asylum at U.S. border today
HAVANA, Cuba — Amid growing tensions between the U.S. and Cuba, the International Jazz Plaza Festival is bringing together the largest group of American artists in its 33-year history and a striking presence of Americans in the audience. For American artists, the festival, which kicked off Tuesday, Jan. 16 and ends on Sunday, Jan. 21, presents a unique opportunity for musical exchange with their counterparts on the island. Around 180 artists from the U.S. are performing at the festival, which constitutes 80 percent of international participants. Three-time Grammy Award winning American jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater, who performed Thursday night, told NBC News she is thankful for former President Barack Obama's opening with the island and "I just hope that this is going to continue to grow." "I have a deeper appreciation for the struggles of this country, for the struggles of the musicians here," she said. There was also a notable amount of Americans in the audience despite … [Read more...] about Despite U.S.-Cuba tensions, more Americans attend Havana’s famed jazz festival
NEW YORK — A 20-page long application, $700 fee and the requirement to know the answers to roughly 100 questions spanning the course of U.S. history — the naturalization process for those seeking U.S. citizenship is arguably difficult. Yet hundreds of thousands of lawful permanent residents, such as a green card holders, take the naturalization exams each year in a bid to become American citizens. Now one museum in New York is hoping to make that process just a little easier for green card holders living in the city. The New York Historical Society started a new course in the summer of 2017 to help citizenship applicants explore and understand American history, using assets housed right in its building on Central Park West: artwork. With hundreds of paintings, statues and historical artifacts at their disposal, they are using the power of visual aids to help students better absorb the facts and dates. The organization is combining a six-week comprehensive written course … [Read more...] about How one group is using art to help aspiring U.S. citizens