These reports, mandated by Congress in the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 and the Trade Act of 1974, describe the performance of other governments in practicing their international commitments on civil, political, individual, and worker rights, as defined by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The UN and the Chinese government produce similar reports.
On April 5, 2009, President Obama gave a speech in Prague, calling nuclear terrorism "the most immediate and extreme threat to global security," and hosted the first Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) in Washington, DC in April 2010. Additional summits took place in Seoul in 2012, in the Hague in 2014, and the final session in Washington in 2016. The summit aims to secure nuclear material and encourage collaboration between countries to eliminate nuclear weapons. Additional documents are available on the State Department website. Countries report on their progress in securing their nuclear materials.
President Barack Obama traveled to Cuba March 20-22, 2016, the first time a sitting U.S. president has traveled to Cuba since 1928. The trip is part of the normalization of relations between the United States and Cuba that began in December 2014. President Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro held a joint press conference and discussed the opening of a U.S. embassy in Cuba, trade relations, and human rights.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released this statement on March 10, 2016. The leaders agreed to move forward on the Paris Agreement and support other international efforts to combat the effects of climate change. The joint statement also details U.S.-Canada cooperation on curbing emissions, integrating renewable energy into existing grids, and developing additional clean technologies.
On February 23, 2016, President Barack Obama announced the Exceutive National Security team and Department of Defense plan to close down the Guantanamo Bay Detention Facility, transfer the remaining detainees, and accelerate the review process about the threats posed by current detainees.
Leaders from ASEAN countries met with U.S. President Obama in Sunnylands, California February 15-16, 2016. In his remarks at the summit, President Obama discussed his administration's "foreign policy rebalance to the Asia Pacific" and how the relationship will continue into future administrations.
Issued by the Office of Management and Budget, the Budget of the United States Government is a collection of documents that contains the budget message of the President, information about the President's budget proposals for a given fiscal year, and other budgetary publications that have been issued throughout the fiscal year. Other related and supporting budget publications, such as the Economic Report of the President, are included, which may vary from year to year.
On January 29, 2016, Canadian Foreign Minister Stephane Dion hosted U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Mexican Foreign Secretary Claudia Ruiz Massieua. The ministers discussed how the three countries can cooperate in the areas of energy and environment, combatting violent extremism, and reducing organized crime and human and drug trafficking. They also discussed the North American Leaders’ Summit scheduled for spring 2016.
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos on January 22, 2016, discussing the United States' global commitments in trade, economic development, foreign relations, and conflict resolution. He specifically mentioned the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran, the Paris climate agreement, and the Trans Pacific Partnership.
Secretary of State John Kerry spoke at the National Defense University about the Obama administration's foreign policy agenda. The main focus of his speech included strategy for defeating the self-proclaimed Islamic State, addressing the humanitarian crisis in Syria, integrating screened refugees, and beginning implementation of several agreements, including the Iran nuclear deal (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action), the Paris climate change agreement, and the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
The State of the Union is a speech given annually by the president to Congress, in which the president outlines the current condition of the United States and national priorities for the coming year, based on the U.S. Constitution, Article Two, Section Three. President Obama has delivered his State of the Union Address speeches on January 27, 2010, January 25, 2011, January 24, 2012, February 12, 2013, January 28, 2014, January 20, 2015, and January 12, 2016.
The governments of Japan and South Korea discussed the trafficking of South Korean sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. Japan agreed to provide reparations to surviviors which the government of South Korea would distribute; South Korea agreed to review the placement of a memorial statue dedicated to comfort women, which is near the Japanese Embassy in Seoul.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative reports annually to Congress on China's compliance with its World Trade Organization (WTO) obligations, based on China's policies and practices. The first report in 2004 was released exactly three years after China’s accession to the WTO.
The United Nations Security Council approved this resolution on December 18, 2015. The document provides a timeline for a ceasefire and a Syrian-led political transition. It also discusses how the UN will monitor political negotiations, provide humanitarian assistance, and fight terrorist groups in the region.
The second World Internet Conference (WIC) was held in Wuzhen, China, from December 16-18, 2015. The theme for the conference was "An Interconnected World Shared and Governed by All: Building a Community of Common Future in Cyberspace" and conference leaders proposed the Wuzhen Initiative as a continuation of the work of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS).
UN General Assembly Resolution 56/183 in December 2001 endorsed the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), which encourages global discussions on how to benefit from the digital revolution while addressing the digital divide. The International Telecommunication Union hosted two phases in Geneva from December 10 to 12, 2003, and in Tunis from November 16 to 18, 2005. From February 25 to 27, 2013, WSIS participants met in Paris to evaluate progress and goals. In December 2015, the UN produced a draft resolution on the outcome of the WSIS from the past ten years and renewed the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) for another ten years.
World Trade Organization (WTO) particpants created the the Information Technology Agreement (ITA) in December 1996, which eliminated tariffs on specific technology product exports. From 2012 to 2015, WTO participants negotiated how to expand the ITA to cover additional technologies.
India now matters to U.S. interests in virtually every dimension. This Independent Task Force report assesses the current situation in India and the U.S.-India relationship, and suggests a new model for partnership with a rising India.
Rates of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in low- and middle-income countries are increasing faster than in wealthier countries. The report outlines a plan for collective action on this growing epidemic.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2015 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »
Now Available: Foreign Policy Begins at Home
The biggest threat to America's security and prosperity comes not from abroad but from within, writes CFR President Richard N. Haass in his provocative new book. More