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Tag Archive: international aid

As Middle East boils, Jordan press crackdown may be strategically ignored

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Patriot Missile launch, photo source Wikimedia With much of the Middle East a cauldron, seemingly stable allies in the region can get free passes from Washington. Consider longtime U.S. ally Jordan. The Hashemite Kingdom blocked access to perhaps as many as 300 "unregistered" media websites without any public comment from Secretary of State John F. Kerry, who has more pressing human rights issues: trying to prevent a "complete and total Syrian implosion." To that end, the U.S. is weighing an extended stay for Patriot missile batteries and F-16 combat aircraft currently in Jordan for military exercises. And that's not the only American assistance that the government of King Abdullah II is anticipating: there is a total $670 million in U.S. aid promised to Jordan this year, according to foreignassistance.gov. The greatest share, $310 million, goes to “peace and security” programs, most of which go to counter-terrorism efforts.

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International aid groups lack transparency

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International aid groups represent more than $130 billion in annual cash flows, and 80 percent of the groups controlling that money fail to provide some basic information about where and how that money is used. Those are the findings of a recent report from Publish What You Fund, a group focused on a global campaign for aid transparency. Though the scores for most groups are low, the results of the 2012 report are an improvement from past years. The average score of a 41 percent transparency rating this year comes after an average score of just 34 percent in 2011.

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