Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Stars join call to #FreeCyntoiaBrown

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Emmerson Mnangagwa to be sworn in as President on Friday

Read more

THE DEBATE

Hard bargaining: Lebanon prime minister returns and suspends resignation

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Keepers of the flame: Native American communities seeking to protect their cultural legacy

Read more

FOCUS

Tunisians disillusioned, seven years after revolution

Read more

ACCESS ASIA

Indonesia: New orangutan species found in Sumatra

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Meet the 16-year-old behind the hijab emoji

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: 'Battle of the Sexes', 'Jupiter’s Moon', 'Reinventing Marvin'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Robert Mugabe resigns: 'Hip Hip Harare'

Read more

Americas

Congress approves $106 billion for war, swine flu

Video by Claire PRYDE

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-06-17

The US Congress has approved a compromised version of a 106-billion-dollar emergency bill to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, increase efforts to fight swine flu, and form America's contribution to the International Monetary Fund.

AFP - Congress on Tuesday gave final approval to a 106 billion dollar emergency bill to pay for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, shore up efforts to fight swine flu, and fund US participation in the IMF.
  
By a vote of 226 to 202, lawmakers in the US House of Representatives approved a compromise version of legislation, to reconcile differing House and Senate versions.
  
Among other budget items, the measure provides 79.9 billion dollars for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, 7.7 billion dollars to combat the A(H1N1) flu virus, and eight billion dollars for the International Monetary Fund.
  
House Democrat David Obey, a key figure during negotiations on the spending measure talks in that chamber, acknowledged some resistance among lawmakers to the IMF funding, but said the monies were necessary to bolster a still-sagging global economy.
  
"You know, this is a tough reality. We have to participate in the world, and when the world economy becomes shaky, we have a responsibility to ourselves to try to stabilize that world economic situation," he said.
  
The supplemental spending measure was bogged down after the Senate legislation -- over the objections of Democrats in the House -- banned public release of the controversial images allegedly showing abuse of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan at the hands of US military personnel.
  
President Barack Obama broke the logjam last week, however, offering in a letter to negotiators, to "continue to take every legal and administrative remedy available to me to ensure the ... detainee photographs are not released."
  
The compromise bill also includes provisions on prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay, but does not include the 80 million dollars originally requested by the Obama administration to close the detention facility at the US naval base in southern Cuba, where some 230 detainees remain.
  
Under the agreement reached by the Senate and the House, a Democratic source said the government could transfer some prisoners to US soil only to face trial, although the highly sensitive issue of where they would serve out their sentence remains unresolved.

Date created : 2009-06-17

COMMENT(S)