U.S. Policy Update for 9 June ,2016

World map, political view

Today’s topics:     Terrorism/ World Oceans Day/Fishackathon/China/Russia/LGBTI


08 June 2016 Terrorist Attack in Tel Aviv  Press Statement Mark C. Toner Deputy Department Spokesperson
The United States condemns today’s horrific terrorist attack in Tel Aviv in the strongest possible terms. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and our hopes for a quick recovery for those wounded. These cowardly attacks against innocent civilians can never be justified. We are in touch with Israeli authorities to express our support and concern.

World Oceans Day

08 June 2016 World Oceans Day 2016  Press Statement  John Kerry Secretary of State

A free diver holds a sign which says "World Oceans Day" in Singapore as she sits among fish in an exhibit without any breathing apparatus in efforts to send a message that pollutants pose a threat to marine animals. © AP Image
“World Oceans Day” in Singapore © AP Image

On World Oceans Day, we reflect on the challenges facing our ocean and what we must do to protect this life-sustaining resource for future generations. The fact is that the rich marine environment many of us have enjoyed throughout our lives is under extreme stress from human activity. Without a shift in our approach, our children and grandchildren will inherit an ocean that is less healthy, less resilient and less able to provide for the world’s population.

I have seen the change over the course of my lifetime alone. The ocean has many fewer pristine areas. It has too much trash, nutrient pollution, and carbon dioxide. We need to do more to maintain and restore healthy marine ecosystems, manage fish stocks on a sustainable basis, and establish more marine protected areas (MPAs) to protect the most vulnerable parts of the ocean, such as coral reefs. Despite the disturbing trends, I am hopeful we are approaching a turning point in our understanding of the role we must play in sustaining a healthy ocean.


08 June 2016 Department of State Announces 2016 Fishackathon Winner The Secretary’s Office of Global Partnerships at the U.S. Department of State announced on World Oceans Day that the global winner of the third annual Fishackathon was Akubic, from Taiwan. The team will receive a $10,000 cash prize from Virgin Group for their solution, Great Lakes Savior.

Organized by the Secretary’s Office of Global Partnerships, Fishackathon is a public-private partnership that brings together the U.S. government with the private sector and civil society to answer Secretary Kerry’s call in saving our ocean. The event—which leads up to the U.S. Department of State’s annual Our Ocean conference taking place this year on September 15th and 16th—called on coders, designers, conservation organizations, and science enthusiasts from all around the world to come together over Earth Day weekend, April 22nd-24th, to create new applications and tools to address issues facing the world’s oceans and fisheries.


07 June 2016  Secretary Kerry: June 2016 Consultation on People-to-People Exchange Plenary Session
Consultation on People-to-People Exchange Plenary Session
National Museum
Beijing, China

SECRETARY KERRY: Thank you very much, Madam Vice Premier. Look, at the outset, I want to make it clear to everybody that I was totally prepared to trade my speech for more singing.  I want to thank the Yale’s Spizzwinks, as they are known, and the Xinhua University acapella singers. My – the president of Yale, Peter Salovey, is sitting over here. Yale has a very active, engaged educational relationship with China, and I think all of us should join together in thanking those who entertained us in the beginning and who continue this relationship. Peter, we’re very grateful. Thank you very much.  Also very comforted to know that “Can anybody find me someone to love” is still a question people are asking.  I spent a lot of time when I was at Yale wondering about that.


07 June 2016 Russian Violations of Borders, Treaties, and Human Rights.  Testimony Victoria Nuland Assistant Secretary, Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs
Statement Before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee
As this Committee knows, for more than 20 years following the collapse of the Soviet Union, across multiple Administrations led by both political parties, the United States sought to build a constructive relationship with Russia, and to support that country’s greater integration into regional and global institutions and the rules-based international order.


24May 2016 His murder sparked new protections for gay Americans
Matt Shepard Is a Friend of Mine is a film that tells the story of the 1998 murder of college student Matthew Shepard and how it sparked a national dialogue on gay rights in the United States. Since that time, legal protections of the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people have been put into place not only in America, but around the world.

“Promoting the human rights of all persons, everywhere, including LGBTI persons” is a U.S. foreign policy priority, but also “the right thing to do,” says U.S. Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBTI Persons Randy Berry.

Thirty-six countries prohibit hate crimes based on sexual orientation. But in many other countries, people can be jailed or even killed because of their sexual orientation or activity. Clearly, there is still work to be done to protect the basic human rights of LGBTI people.

 Join Berry on Tuesday, June 14, on this page for either of two live webchats — at 14:00 UTC and 19:00 UTC — to discuss ways to promote tolerance and develop policies to stop hate crimes.