Tag Archives: government

US government shutdown: Trump expected to sign border wall deal to avoid closure

US government shutdown: Trump expected to sign border wall deal to avoid closureAddressing the deal on Wednesday, Mr Trump said he would be taking “a very serious look” at the text when the White House receives it from Congress. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill were still haggling over final details, but they appeared on track to finish soon. White House officials cautioned on Wednesday that they have yet to receive full legislative language.



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Gay couples in Japan join together on Valentine's Day to sue government over same-sex marriage ban

Gay couples in Japan join together on Valentine's Day to sue government over same-sex marriage banThirteen gay couples filed Japan's first lawsuit challenging the country's rejection of same-sex marriage on Valentine's Day, arguing the denial violates their constitutional right to equality. Six couples holding banners saying "Marriage For All Japan" walked into Tokyo District Court to file their cases against the government, with similar cases filed by three couples in Osaka, one couple in Nagoya and three couples in Sapporo. Plaintiff Kenji Aiba, standing next to his partner Ken Kozumi, told reporters he would "fight this war together with sexual minorities all around Japan." Mr Aiba and Mr Kozumi have held onto a marriage certificate they signed at their wedding party in 2013, anticipating Japan would emulate other advanced nations and legalise same-sex unions. That day has yet to come, and legally they are just friends even though they've lived as a married couple for more than five years. So they decided to act rather than waiting. "Right now we are both in good health and able to work, but what if either of us has an accident or becomes ill? We are not allowed to be each other's guarantors for medical treatment, or to be each other's heir," Mr Kozumi, a 45-year-old office worker, said in a recent interview with his partner Mr Aiba, 40. "Progress in Japan has been too slow." Politician Mizuho Fukushima has spoken out in favour of gay rights in Japan Credit: AP Photo/Mari Yamaguchi Ten Japanese municipalities have enacted "partnership" ordinances for same-sex couples to make it easier for them to rent apartments together, among other things, but they are not legally binding. Japanese laws are currently interpreted as allowing marriage only between a man and a woman. In a society where pressure for conformity is strong, many gay people hide their sexuality, fearing prejudice at home, school or work. The obstacles are even higher for transgender people in the highly gender-specific society. The Supreme Court last month upheld a law that effectively requires transgender people to be sterilized before they can have their gender changed on official documents. The LGBT equal rights movement has lagged behind in Japan because people who are silently not conforming to conventional notions of sexuality have been so marginalized that the issue hasn't been considered a human rights problem, experts say. "Many people don't even think of a possibility that their neighbors, colleagues or classmates may be sexual minorities," said Mizuho Fukushima, a lawyer-turned-politician and an expert on gender and human rights issues. "And the pressure to follow a conservative family model, in which heterosexual couples are supposed to marry and have children, is still strong." Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his ultra-conservative supporters have campaigned to restore a paternalistic society based on heterosexual marriages. The government has restarted moral education class at schools to teach children family values and good deeds. "Whether to allow same-sex marriage is an issue that affects the foundation of how families should be in Japan, which requires an extremely careful examination," Mr Abe said in a statement last year.



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Trump set for compromise with Congress over Mexico border wall to avoid government shutdown

Trump set for compromise with Congress over Mexico border wall to avoid government shutdownCongress is set to resolve its clattering brawl with President Donald Trump in uncommonly bipartisan fashion as lawmakers prepare to pass a border security compromise providing a mere sliver of the billions he’s demanded for a wall with Mexico and averting a rekindled government shutdown this weekend. With Mr Trump’s half-hearted signature widely expected but hardly guaranteed, congressional leaders planned votes Thursday on the sweeping package. Mr Trump’s assent would end a raucous legislative saga that commenced before Christmas and was ending, almost fittingly, on Valentine’s Day.



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Trump vows to build Mexico border wall as deal reached to avoid US government shutdown

Trump vows to build Mexico border wall as deal reached to avoid US government shutdownRepublican and Democrat negotiators reached a finance deal late on Monday to prevent another shutdown of the US government – even as Donald Trump threatened their progress by insisting he would “build the wall anyway”. The construction will follow existing designs, likely with metal slats, and would be considerably less of an undertaking than the 215 miles of concrete wall for which the White House demanded $ 5.7bn (£4bn) in December. More than 800,000 federal employees went unpaid over a period of 35 days, postponing the State of the Union address and hurting Mr Trump’s poll numbers.



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In new government shutdown, flight attendants won't let passengers' lives be put at risk

In new government shutdown, flight attendants won't let passengers' lives be put at riskThe shutdown put our lives and livelihoods in danger, risked the safety of everyone who flies, and threatened our entire economy.



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Trump says Democrats want 'another government shutdown' in rambling border wall tweets

Trump says Democrats want 'another government shutdown' in rambling border wall tweetsDonald Trump says he believes Democrats want a new government shutdown in order to divert attention from the controversies swirling in Virginia, and strong jobs numbers released last week. The president’s comments came just as his acting White House chief of staff said another shutdown is not off the table, and after news from Capitol Hill indicated negotiators had reached an impasse over Mr Trump’s demands for border wall funding. “It was a very bad week for the Democrats, with the GREAT economic numbers, The Virginia disaster and the State of the Union address.



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New government shutdown looms as negotiators fail to reach deal over Trump border wall funding

New government shutdown looms as negotiators fail to reach deal over Trump border wall fundingA new US government shutdown looks increasingly likely as negotiations reached an impasse on whether to limit the number of undocumented immigrants that can be detained. The two sides also remain separated on how much spending to allocate for president Donald Trump‘s promised border wall. Mr Trump used the dispute to cast the Democrats as being soft on criminals.



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Time Running Out to Avoid Government Shutdown as Talks Falter

Time Running Out to Avoid Government Shutdown as Talks FalterDemocrats are seeking a cap to force U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, to detain criminals rather than undocumented immigrants with no criminal history. Republicans are resisting a limit on grounds that criminals shouldn’t count toward it and ICE should have discretion. Amid the talks, Trump heads to El Paso, Texas, on Monday for a rally “to show Democrats how much Americans demand The WALL,’’ according to a Trump campaign fundraising email on Sunday.



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Talks collapse on border deal as U.S. government shutdown looms

Talks collapse on border deal as U.S. government shutdown looms“The talks are stalled right now,” Republican Senator Richard Shelby told “Fox News Sunday.” He said the impasse was over Democrats’ desire to cap the number of beds in detention facilities for people who enter the country illegally. Efforts to resolve the dispute over border security funding extended into the weekend as a special congressional negotiating panel aimed to reach a deal by Monday, lawmakers and aides said. Democratic Senator Jon Tester played down any breakdown in talks.



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Iran FM extends support for new Lebanese government

Iran FM extends support for new Lebanese governmentBEIRUT (AP) — Iran's foreign minister extended an offer for Iranian military assistance to the U.S.-backed Lebanese army on Sunday, saying Iran is ready to assist in all sectors should the Lebanese government want it.



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