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  • Nonprofits' Friend of the Court Brief in KindHearts Case Supports Due Process | Charity & Security Network
    notice and a meaningful opportunity to contest the basis for such a designation On Jan 30 a the court threw out a protective order that had prevented KindHearts attorneys from getting copies of its files that were seized by the government in order to prepare their case The friend of the court brief took no position on the facts of KindHeart s case Instead it gave the court background information on the broader impacts the government s overreaching policies that deny basic rights have on charitable programs It states that the groups believe the government s unconstitutional actions and policies including the freezing of assets pending investigation the use of vague and overbroad legal standards the failure to provide adequate notice and a meaningful opportunity for a hearing to targeted NPOs and the lack of robust judicial review make it difficult or impossible for charities to mount a meaningful opposition to the accusations Fearing the possible arbitrary or mistaken action by the Department of Treasury many charities have been forced to consider if they will continue or begin work in regions devastated by prolonged conflict where terrorist organizations may be active These barriers according to the brief have created a climate of fear and intimidation among nonprofit organizations discouraging them from doing their critical humanitarian work particularly in conflict torn regions that are most in need for fear of being arbitrarily subjected to these actions and policies themselves The brief also says donors are discouraged from contributing out of fear their donations will be seized with no clear path for the money to be returned or directed toward related humanitarian work If less aid work and money is being delivered the roots of terrorism poverty and injustice will flourish and contribute to future acts of violence The government s actions

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/news/Nonprofits_Friend_Court_Brief_KindHearts_Supports_Due_Process (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    activities of Palestinians Relief and Development Fund Interpal concluded the charity is not funding or supporting groups sponsoring terrorism The Commission ordered improvements in procedures for choosing and overseeing local charity partners in the Occupied Palestinian Territories Jordan and Lebanon It also recognized the importance of charities that conduct aid related activities in high risk areas of the world and acknowledged the dangers they face Read more about UK Charity Commission Interpal Not Supporting Terror Groups Appointments for Top Treasury Posts Will They Take a Big Picture View of Charities and Security Date April 9 2009 On March 23 the Obama administration announced appointment of three top Treasury officials Neal Wolin as Deputy Secretary Lael Brainard as undersecretary for international affairs and Stuart Levey to continue as undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence The Levey appointment raises concerns about possible continuation of Treasury s hostile policies toward charities during the Bush administration Read more about Appointments for Top Treasury Posts Will They Take a Big Picture View of Charities and Security House Hearing Looks at Militarization of Foreign Aid Date April 9 2009 On March 18 2009 the House Foreign Affairs Committee held its third hearing in an ongoing investigation into the proper role of the military in the government s foreign assistance efforts Committee Chair Howard L Read more about House Hearing Looks at Militarization of Foreign Aid House Urged to Improve Oversight Regulation of Intelligence Gathering Date April 9 2009 On March 28 2009 the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Intelligence Information Sharing and Terrorism Risk Assessment heard from law enforcement officials and advocacy group leaders about developing an effective domestic intelligence sharing network to prevent terror while building privacy and civil liberties protections into the system Read more about House Urged to Improve Oversight Regulation of Intelligence Gathering ACLU Report Calls for Oversight Overhaul of Patriot Act Date April 17 2009 Reclaiming Patriotism A Call to Reconsider the Patriot Act was published by the ACLU on March 11 2009 Read more about ACLU Report Calls for Oversight Overhaul of Patriot Act Inspectors General Release Report on Secret Surveillance Programs Date July 15 2009 A July 2009 report by five agency Inspectors Generals puts the spotlight on another anti terrorism measure that fails to augment national security but infringes on civil liberties Without identifying any specific activities the unclassified report refers to Presidential Surveillance Programs PSP authorized by the Bush administration in the aftermath of 9 11 The report describes conflicting views surrounding the legality of parts of the PSP and questions the benefits received from the information collected Read more about Inspectors General Release Report on Secret Surveillance Programs Two Capitol Hill Events Spotlight Partnership between Muslim Americans and Law Enforcement Date February 14 2011 On Feb 7 2011 the Muslim Public Affairs Council MPAC hosted a forum on Capitol Hill about the Muslim American community s role in countering domestic violent extremism A similarily themed event about the partnership between Muslim Americans and law enforcement was

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=1 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    a bill to protect residents from having authorities violate their First Amendment rights The House of Delegates and Senate approved similar bills and Governor Martin O Malley has expressed his commitment to signing Read more about Maryland Lawmakers Limit Covert Police Surveillance House Hearing on Fusion Centers ACLU Calls for DHS Investigation Date May 11 2009 A Congressional hearing on fusion centers state based information sharing collaborations between federal state local and tribal law enforcement agencies heard several witnesses who acknowledged that privacy and civil liberties problems in fusion center operations must be addressed One witness said these problems are so severe that the fusion centers should be closed On the same day the American Civil Liberties Union ACLU called on DHS to probe five f Read more about House Hearing on Fusion Centers ACLU Calls for DHS Investigation Frustration Toward FBI Boils Over for American Muslim Groups Date May 11 2009 Months of deteriorating relationships between the FBI and major American Muslim organizations came to a head when revelations of a FBI informant posing as a convert in mosques became public in February 2009 The incident combined with the FBI s disengagement from communications with the Council on American Islamic Relations CAIR has lead several American Muslim advocacy groups to consider a suspension of ongoing outreach with the FBI The growing tension was raised during a Senate hearing where FBI Director Robert Mueller was questioned about the Bureau s conduct about investigating Mus Read more about Frustration Toward FBI Boils Over for American Muslim Groups DHS Report on Rightwing Extremism Puts Napolitano on Defensive Date May 11 2009 On April 15 2009 Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano responded to criticism from lawmakers conservatives and veterans groups about a leaked unclassified intelligence assessment warning national law enforcement agencies about ongoing political and social conditions that could trigger rightwing extremism Read more about DHS Report on Rightwing Extremism Puts Napolitano on Defensive Hearing Calls for Improved Intelligence Gathering Strategies That Protect Free Speech Date May 11 2009 The hearing entitled Protecting National Security and Civil Liberties Strategies for Terrorism Information Sharing came on the heels of several controversial fusion center bulletins bolstering civil libertarians arguments that the Information Sharing Environment ISE and its national network of intelligence fusion centers are vulnerable to civil liberties abuses such as unconstitutional police investigations of peaceful Read more about Hearing Calls for Improved Intelligence Gathering Strategies That Protect Free Speech Clinton s Speech Stresses A New Generation for State and Civil Society Relations Date May 11 2009 Speaking at the Global Philanthropy Forum Conference in Washington D C Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told the audience that the State Department s doors are wide open to engage and collaborate with civil society organizations The April 22 2009 speech served as another platform for Clinton to promote her smart power strategy that emphasizes an increased role for aid and development in American foreign policy Read more about Clinton s Speech Stresses A New Generation for

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=2 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    Charities were initially issued in 2002 and revised on Dec 5 2005 Treasury sought comments on its revision despite their having been operational since Dec 5 it is unclear how the department will use the comments submitted by the nonprofits Read more about Nonprofits Comments Call for Withdrawal of Anti Terror Financing Guidelines Charities Call For Withdrawal of Anti Terror Guidelines Date December 19 2006 External Link From OMB Watch BNA Money and Politics reports that the Council of Foundations sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Paulson on behalf of the Treasury Guidelines Working Group OMB Watch is apart of the Working Group that is once again asking for the withdrawal of the Anti terrorist Financing Guidelines Voluntary Best Practices for U S based Charities Read more about Charities Call For Withdrawal of Anti Terror Guidelines Amendment to State Secrets Bill Would Expand Ban on Humanitarian Aid and Other Programs Date June 8 2009 Sen Jon Kyl R AZ proposed an amendment to the State Secrets Protection Act S 417 on May 21 2009 when the bill was scheduled for consideration by the Senate Judiciary Committee It was one of several amendments offered but the committee took no action Read more about Amendment to State Secrets Bill Would Expand Ban on Humanitarian Aid and Other Programs Heavy Sentences Handed out in Holy Land Trial Send Chilling Message to U S NGOs Date May 29 2009 On May 27 2009 U S District Judge Jorge Solis handed out sentences for five Arab Americans associated with Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development HLF who had been convicted in November 2008 on charges ranging from supporting a terrorist organization to money laundering and tax fraud Two of the men Shukri Abu Baker and Ghassan Elashi were each sentenced to 65 years in a federal prison and the others each received between 15 and 20 years Read more about Heavy Sentences Handed out in Holy Land Trial Send Chilling Message to U S NGOs More Revelations of FBI Infiltration of Protest Groups at 2008 Republican Convention Date June 8 2009 On May 17 2009 the Des Moines Register reported that they obtained confidential documents that show an FBI informant infiltrated an anti war group that met in Iowa City before the September 2008 Republican National Convention RNC Additionally an undercover sheriff s deputy from Minnesota travelled to Iowa to attend an anti war conference and collect information on a group planning to protest at the RNC in St Paul Read more about More Revelations of FBI Infiltration of Protest Groups at 2008 Republican Convention Sri Lankan Government Denies Entry to Aid Groups Raising Humanitarian Law Questions Date June 8 2009 Even as the catastrophic human tragedy unfolds in Sri Lanka the island s government is refusing to allow aid workers or journalists into the country banning the delivery of humanitarian relief outside of the official camps Read more about Sri Lankan Government Denies Entry to Aid Groups Raising Humanitarian Law Questions Audit Says

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=3 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    wake of several acts of domestic violence that attracted national attention The initial criticism of the report led to its withdrawal and triggered a House resolution exploring its creation Read more about Update Right wing Report Still Accumulating Critics and Supporters State Secrets Protection Act Passes House Subcommittee on Constitution Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Date June 15 2009 After hearing testimony on why the application of the executive state secret privilege needs to curtailed a House subcommittee passed the State Secret Protection Act but limited some appeals and sent it to the Judiciary Committee for further consideration Debate over a similar bill in the Senate has been repeatedly postponed Read more about State Secrets Protection Act Passes House Subcommittee on Constitution Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Terrorism Toolkit Will Offer Guidance to Charities Date July 20 2009 As counterterrorism measures continue to evolve the UK Charity Commission has begun collecting information for developing a toolkit for charities on how to deal with terrorism legislation and related measures in their sector They are requesting charities and NGOs to submit examples of situations and issues affecting them that the Commission should examine and possibly include in the toolkit More information is available from British Overseas NGOs for Development Read more about Terrorism Toolkit Will Offer Guidance to Charities Update Commission Says Targeted Charity Clean Date January 13 2008 As previously reported Barclays bank remains determined to shut down the account of the Bradford based charity Ummah Welfare Trust UWT but extended the deadline for closure by 21 days The closure of the account will translate into a 30 loss of the charity s revenue which comes from direct debits and untraceable anonymous donors Read more about Update Commission Says Targeted Charity Clean War Powers Commission Bill Announced Date January 13 2008 A bill for establishing a National Commission on Presidential War Powers and Civil Liberties has been submitted to committees for further action Co sponsored by several Representatives the Commission will investigate the Bush administration s broad range of policies that were undertaken under claims of unreviewable war powers Read more about War Powers Commission Bill Announced Court Penalizing Humanitarian Aid is Unconstitutional Date January 13 2008 The Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a ruling declaring the statute making it a crime to provide material support or resources to any group designated a foreign terrorist organization as unconstitutional The decision reaffirmed that previous attempts to adjust the statute failed to do so Read more about Court Penalizing Humanitarian Aid is Unconstitutional Federal Judge Charity s Wiretapping Lawsuit May Proceed Date January 13 2009 A charity s lawsuit contesting the Bush administration s use of wiretapping has been reinstated by a federal judge last week The judge ruled that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act FISA does have precedence over the state secrets privilege and said the Al Haramain Islamic Foundation s lawsuit can proceed The lawsuit accuses the government of listening in to telephone calls in early 2004 between

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=4 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    by the Department of Defense DoD and USAID that forces humanitarian groups to collaborate with the military is being called potentially lethal by critics of the plan Representatives from organizations including InterAction CARE and International Relief and Development are outraged at the new policy that they believe will reduce the effectiveness of charitable groups from providing urgently needed aid as they will be too closely connected to the military Read more about Dangerous Partnership Humanitarian Aid Groups and the Military Preemptive Arrests at RNC Threaten Political Organization Date December 16 2008 8 activists who helped organize demonstrations at the Republican National Convention in St Paul have been charged with 4 felony counts and if convicted face over two decades in jail These charges are establishing a dangerous precedent for restricting future political organization demonstration and free speech These arrests were prior to the September convention as an attempt to undermine anti RNC protests in St Paul The 8 activists now known as the RNC8 are being charged with Read more about Preemptive Arrests at RNC Threaten Political Organization 60 Years Later Universal Declaration of Human Rights Endures Date December 11 2008 The United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights sixty years ago on December 10 1948 A revolutionary document in its scope and language its impact on promoting and protecting human rights of every individual around the world cannot be understated The 33 rights proclaiming all human beings are born with inalienable rights and fundamental freedoms is regarded as the cornerstone of governments organizations and people working tirelessly to reduce or eliminate poverty torture and slavery Read more about 60 Years Later Universal Declaration of Human Rights Endures American Foundations International Grants On the Rise Date December 9 2008 A new report finds that American foundations donated to international causes in 2007 more then ever before The forecast for 2008 giving despite the global economic downturn is surprisingly optimistic Read more about American Foundations International Grants On the Rise Interpal Nearing Forced Closure Due to Allegations Date December 9 2008 Interpal a UK based nonprofit is facing being shut down after its bank was told to close its account by a major London clearing bank Originally set for December 8 the deadline for closing the account has been extended to January 30 2009 Read more about Interpal Nearing Forced Closure Due to Allegations 300 000 Sri Lankans Urgently Need Aid Nonprofit Funds Seized by Government Date December 9 2008 Amnesty International AI is calling for urgent humanitarian aid for more than 300 000 people displaced by the ongoing conflict in the northern Wanni region of Sri Lanka Turmoil between the government and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam LTTE has left thousands of people in desperate need of shelter food and sanitation Read more about 300 000 Sri Lankans Urgently Need Aid Nonprofit Funds Seized by Government Jury Convicts Muslim Charity of Terrorism Charges Date November 25 2008 In the Holy Land Foundation HLF retrial a federal jury in

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=5 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    to Limit Unreasonable Searches Diverse Group of Nonprofits Seek Meeting with Obama Administration on New Rules for Charities Date July 10 2009 On July 2 2009 the Charity and Security Network sent a letter to President Obama asking for meeting to to provide background information on how current national security rules create problems for all U S charities and to provide recommendations for change Read more about Diverse Group of Nonprofits Seek Meeting with Obama Administration on New Rules for Charities Experts Describe Tensions Between U S Laws and Providing Humanitarian Assistance Date July 2 2009 On July 1 2009 a panel discussion featuring U S NGO leaders and experts shared their expertise on humanitarian codes charitable groups and donors affected by U S laws and regulations The speakers voiced concerns over the legal constraints national security laws impose on U S Read more about Experts Describe Tensions Between U S Laws and Providing Humanitarian Assistance Panel of Experts Explain How the Work of Charities Counters Terror Date March 23 2009 Speaking to a standing room only crowd at the National Press Club on March 20 2009 a panel of NGO leaders explained how ill advised counterterrorism measures CTMs diminish the critical work of humanitarian groups and exacerbate the root causes of terror poverty injustice and being excluded from the political process Read more about Panel of Experts Explain How the Work of Charities Counters Terror Fusion Center Analyst Caught Spying on Peace Protestors Date July 31 2009 Washington State peace activists allege that an army intelligence analyst infiltrated their group and collected private information that was later shared with several law enforcement agencies Discovered through a public records request the covert surveillance of civilian organizations by a military official is the latest threat to First Amendment Read more about Fusion Center Analyst Caught Spying on Peace Protestors DOJ Asks Supreme Court to Hear Case on Definitions of Material Support of Terrorism Date July 16 2009 On June 4 2009 the Department of Justice DOJ asked the Supreme Court to review a ruling on three elements of the definition of prohibited material support of terrorism The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that definitions of training expert advice or assistance derived from specialized knowledge and service are unconstitutionally vague as applied to the Humanitarian Law Project s HLP plan to provide human rights and conflict resolution training to two designated terrorist organizations Read more about DOJ Asks Supreme Court to Hear Case on Definitions of Material Support of Terrorism Double Standard Chiquita Banana Fined Not Shut Down for Transactions with Designated Terrorists Date April 3 2007 In a plea agreement with the U S Department of Justice DOJ on Mar 14 2007 Chiquita Brands International agreed to pay a 25 million fine after admitting it paid terrorists for protection in a dangerous region of Colombia The payments made between 1997 and 2004 continued despite the company s knowledge that they were illegal The company was allowed to continue profitable production

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=6 (2016-02-16)
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  • News | Charity & Security Network
    Unchecked Investigative Powers Date August 21 2009 On Aug 18 2009 a federal judge ruled the Treasury Department s seizure of a charity s assets without notice or means of appeal is a violation of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments If the 100 page order is upheld the ruling challenges the emergency measure passed two weeks after 9 11 that allows Treasury to shut down any organization suspected of financing terrorists without warrants or court approval A hearing to address additional issues has been set for Sept 21 Read more about Charity s Fourth and Fifth Amendments Violated By Treasury s Unchecked Investigative Powers NGOs Raise Concerns about USAID s Proposed Vetting Policy for Contractors Date August 28 2009 On Aug Read more about NGOs Raise Concerns about USAID s Proposed Vetting Policy for Contractors Appeals Court Declines to Rule on Constitutionality of Presidential Power to Shut Down Charities Date August 31 2009 On Aug 24 2009 the U S Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a lower court decision that declined to consider the constitutionality of the President s authority to designate terrorists under the International Emergency Economic Power Act IEEPA because plaintiff Humanitarian Law Project HLP has not been designated The Department of Treasury Treasury licensing regulations were not considered for similar reasons Read more about Appeals Court Declines to Rule on Constitutionality of Presidential Power to Shut Down Charities Critics Object to Proposed Watch List Secrecy Date September 11 2009 White House officials are using the Intelligence Reauthorization Act of 2010 to propose a new exemption to the a Freedom of Information Act FOIA for watch list data that would end disclosure through FOIA requests Citing excessive errors in national security watch lists and other privacy concerns advocacy organizations have written to Congressional leaders urging rejection of the proposal Read more about Critics Object to Proposed Watch List Secrecy President s Statement at End of Ramadan Recognizes Importance of Charities Date September 22 2009 On Sept 19 2009 President Obama issued a statement on the occasion of Eid ul Fitr the celebration marking the end of Islam s holy month of Ramadan It emphasized the important of charitable giving in Islam and said the administration is continuing its efforts to ensure that Muslims are able to fulfill their charitable obligations not just during Ramadan but throughout the year Read more about President s Statement at End of Ramadan Recognizes Importance of Charities Fusion Centers New Access to Military Intelligence Raises Concerns Date September 29 2009 The Department of Homeland Security DHS announced on Sept 14 2009 that classified military intelligence will be made available to state and local fusion centers which function as information sharing hubs between DHS and state tribal and local officials Critics are concerned that the addition of Department of Defense DoD intelligence without proper oversight will threaten the privacy and civil liberties of U S citizens The record of fusion centers to date indicates such concerns are justified Read more about

    Original URL path: http://www.charityandsecurity.org/content_type/news?tid=All&page=7 (2016-02-16)
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