Fauci Repeatedly Contradicts Trump’s Coronavirus Claims

31 Jul

At today’s House Select Coronavirus Committee hearing, Dr. Fauci repeatedly contradicted Trump’s false claims on coronavirus.

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that children are immune to coronavirus.

QUESTION: “Are children ‘almost immune’ to the disease?”

[…] FAUCI: “Do children get infected, yes they do.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that coronavirus will disappear.

QUESTION: “Is Covid-19 going to magically disappear, Dr. Fauci?”

FAUCI: “I do not believe it will disappear.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that coronavirus was a hoax.

QUESTION: “Is Covid-19 a hoax?”

FAUCI: “No.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s recommendation to inject bleach as a cure.

QUESTION: “Can people cure themselves of Covid-19 by injecting themselves with disinfectant or bleach?”

FAUCI: “No.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s repeated pushing of hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment.

FAUCI: “Any and all of the randomized placebo-control trials, which is the gold standard of determining if something is effective, none of them had shown any efficacy of hydroxychloroquine.”

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Fauci Repeatedly Contradicts Trump’s Coronavirus Claims

31 Jul

At today’s House Select Coronavirus Committee hearing, Dr. Fauci repeatedly contradicted Trump’s false claims on coronavirus.

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that children are immune to coronavirus.

QUESTION: “Are children ‘almost immune’ to the disease?”

[…] FAUCI: “Do children get infected, yes they do.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that coronavirus will disappear.

QUESTION: “Is Covid-19 going to magically disappear, Dr. Fauci?”

FAUCI: “I do not believe it will disappear.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s claim that coronavirus was a hoax.

QUESTION: “Is Covid-19 a hoax?”

FAUCI: “No.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s recommendation to inject bleach as a cure.

QUESTION: “Can people cure themselves of Covid-19 by injecting themselves with disinfectant or bleach?”

FAUCI: “No.”

Fauci contradicted Trump’s repeated pushing of hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment.

FAUCI: “Any and all of the randomized placebo-control trials, which is the gold standard of determining if something is effective, none of them had shown any efficacy of hydroxychloroquine.”

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DNC on Unemployment Benefits Expiring Tonight

31 Jul

As unemployment benefits are set to expire tonight for millions of Americans, DNC War Room senior spokesperson and advisor Lily Adams released the following statement: 

“Trump and Republicans have pulled the rug out from under millions of working families — costing unemployed Americans $600 in income every week and demanding unemployment benefits be cut by as much as half. We have known about this deadline for months, and more than a million additional Americans are filing initial claims for unemployment each week, but Trump and Republicans are forcing families to make impossible decisions about whether to pay for food, rent, or medical treatment. It’s always the same with Trump — when it’s big corporations and the top 1%, he’s eager to help. But when it’s working families, he’s nowhere to be found.”

Enhanced unemployment benefits officially expire tonight, but most unemployed Americans already received their final check last weekend because of Republicans’ delays.

NBC News: “The Republican-led Senate adjourned Thursday for a long weekend with no action on COVID-19 relief, all but ensuring that a $600 weekly federal unemployment benefit would expire Friday.”

Associated Press: “The $600 weekly bonus is technically set to expire July 31, but the cutoff is effectively [July 25] owing to how states process payments.”

Tens of millions of out-of-work Americans will lose an average of half their income.

CBS News: “Over 30 million Americans set to lose enhanced unemployment benefits”

New York Times: “More than 20 million Americans could soon see their weekly income fall by half or more at a time when the unemployment rate remains higher than in any period since World War II.”

CNBC: “Millions of Americans will fall off an ‘income cliff’ when extra $600 in unemployment benefits ends”

This is Trump and the GOP’s fault. They delayed acting for months after House Democrats passed the Heroes Act.

Nexstar: “House Democrats are pushing the Senate to take up the Heroes Act after it was passed two months ago.”

Washington Post: “After delaying discussions for weeks, the White House is now trying to rush talks in part because more than 20 million Americans are slated to receive their final expanded unemployment check at the end of this week before the program expires.”

Now, Trump and Republicans are pushing a bill that slashes workers’ income by more than 40%.

CNBC: “GOP relief plan slashes unemployment benefits by 43% for average worker”

Business Insider: “Trump suggested Republicans could reduce extra unemployment benefits to an estimated $175 a week. That would cause millions of jobless Americans to lose up to half their income.”

Republicans are pushing to cut workers’ income while the country faces a historic recession, GDP collapsed by an unprecedented 32.9%, and unemployment claims rise.

NPR: “3 Months Of Hell: U.S. Economy Drops 32.9% In Worst GDP Report Ever”

New York Times: “It was the 19th straight week that the tally exceeded one million, an unheard-of figure before the coronavirus pandemic. And it was the second weekly increase in a row after nearly four months of declines, a sign of how the rebound in cases has undercut the economy’s nascent recovery.”

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DNC on Unemployment Benefits Expiring Tonight

31 Jul

As unemployment benefits are set to expire tonight for millions of Americans, DNC War Room senior spokesperson and advisor Lily Adams released the following statement: 

“Trump and Republicans have pulled the rug out from under millions of working families — costing unemployed Americans $600 in income every week and demanding unemployment benefits be cut by as much as half. We have known about this deadline for months, and more than a million additional Americans are filing initial claims for unemployment each week, but Trump and Republicans are forcing families to make impossible decisions about whether to pay for food, rent, or medical treatment. It’s always the same with Trump — when it’s big corporations and the top 1%, he’s eager to help. But when it’s working families, he’s nowhere to be found.”

Enhanced unemployment benefits officially expire tonight, but most unemployed Americans already received their final check last weekend because of Republicans’ delays.

NBC News: “The Republican-led Senate adjourned Thursday for a long weekend with no action on COVID-19 relief, all but ensuring that a $600 weekly federal unemployment benefit would expire Friday.”

Associated Press: “The $600 weekly bonus is technically set to expire July 31, but the cutoff is effectively [July 25] owing to how states process payments.”

Tens of millions of out-of-work Americans will lose an average of half their income.

CBS News: “Over 30 million Americans set to lose enhanced unemployment benefits”

New York Times: “More than 20 million Americans could soon see their weekly income fall by half or more at a time when the unemployment rate remains higher than in any period since World War II.”

CNBC: “Millions of Americans will fall off an ‘income cliff’ when extra $600 in unemployment benefits ends”

This is Trump and the GOP’s fault. They delayed acting for months after House Democrats passed the Heroes Act.

Nexstar: “House Democrats are pushing the Senate to take up the Heroes Act after it was passed two months ago.”

Washington Post: “After delaying discussions for weeks, the White House is now trying to rush talks in part because more than 20 million Americans are slated to receive their final expanded unemployment check at the end of this week before the program expires.”

Now, Trump and Republicans are pushing a bill that slashes workers’ income by more than 40%.

CNBC: “GOP relief plan slashes unemployment benefits by 43% for average worker”

Business Insider: “Trump suggested Republicans could reduce extra unemployment benefits to an estimated $175 a week. That would cause millions of jobless Americans to lose up to half their income.”

Republicans are pushing to cut workers’ income while the country faces a historic recession, GDP collapsed by an unprecedented 32.9%, and unemployment claims rise.

NPR: “3 Months Of Hell: U.S. Economy Drops 32.9% In Worst GDP Report Ever”

New York Times: “It was the 19th straight week that the tally exceeded one million, an unheard-of figure before the coronavirus pandemic. And it was the second weekly increase in a row after nearly four months of declines, a sign of how the rebound in cases has undercut the economy’s nascent recovery.”

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A Week Of Trump’s Failed China Strategy

31 Jul

News from this week makes clear that Trump has no clear strategy on China. He not only got played by China on trade, but jobs are not coming back as he promised and his inconsistency puts our national security at risk and could cause irreversible damage.

Trump said he’d stand up to China, but during his presidency China has felt they could get away with whatever they wanted.

Los Angeles Times: “During Trump’s presidency, China has furthered its incursion into the disputed South China Sea, given little in trade deals despite U.S. tariffs that have boomeranged on American farmers, cracked down on democracy activists in Hong Kong and put religious minorities in concentration camps in Xinjiang, all with little resistance.”

Trump got played — China isn’t living up to its meager phase one purchase commitments or its promises on intellectual property theft. 

Bloomberg: “By the end of the first half of this year, China had bought about 23% of the total purchase target of more than $170 billion for goods in 2020, according to Bloomberg calculations based on Chinese Customs Administration data.”

ABC News: “More than 50% of the nation’s counterfeit COVID-19 goods found since ‘Operation Stolen Promise’ was launched 100 days ago came from China, according to Homeland Security Investigations, an arm U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”

Trump’s reckless tariffs did not have the intended effect and cost American jobs, and fewer Americans now see the U.S. ahead of China economically.

Associated Press: “Chinese purchases of American farm goods, semiconductors and other goods declined 11.4% last year but still exceeded $100 billion. Exports to China support just under 1 million American jobs, according to the U.S.-China Business Council, though that was down 10% from 2017’s peak.”

Pew Research: “While more Americans say the U.S. is the world’s leading economy (52%) than say the same of China (32%), views of U.S. economic superiority declined 7 percentage points over the past four months.”

Trump’s inconsistent China strategy puts our national security at risk, and he’s only acting tough on China now ahead of the election.

Foreign Policy: “Trump’s Flip-Flops On China Are A Danger To National Security”

New York Times: “With President Trump trailing badly in the polls as the election nears, his national security officials have intensified their attack on China in recent weeks, targeting its officials, diplomats and executives. While the strategy has reinforced a key campaign message, some American officials, worried Mr. Trump will lose, are also trying to engineer irreversible changes, according to people familiar with the thinking.”

It is no wonder Beijing wants Trump to win reelection.

CNBC: “Beijing Would Prefer Trump Be Reelected As It Gives China An Advantage Internationally, Analyst Says”

The post A Week Of Trump’s Failed China Strategy appeared first on Democrats.

A Week Of Trump’s Failed China Strategy

31 Jul

News from this week makes clear that Trump has no clear strategy on China. He not only got played by China on trade, but jobs are not coming back as he promised and his inconsistency puts our national security at risk and could cause irreversible damage.

Trump said he’d stand up to China, but during his presidency China has felt they could get away with whatever they wanted.

Los Angeles Times: “During Trump’s presidency, China has furthered its incursion into the disputed South China Sea, given little in trade deals despite U.S. tariffs that have boomeranged on American farmers, cracked down on democracy activists in Hong Kong and put religious minorities in concentration camps in Xinjiang, all with little resistance.”

Trump got played — China isn’t living up to its meager phase one purchase commitments or its promises on intellectual property theft. 

Bloomberg: “By the end of the first half of this year, China had bought about 23% of the total purchase target of more than $170 billion for goods in 2020, according to Bloomberg calculations based on Chinese Customs Administration data.”

ABC News: “More than 50% of the nation’s counterfeit COVID-19 goods found since ‘Operation Stolen Promise’ was launched 100 days ago came from China, according to Homeland Security Investigations, an arm U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”

Trump’s reckless tariffs did not have the intended effect and cost American jobs, and fewer Americans now see the U.S. ahead of China economically.

Associated Press: “Chinese purchases of American farm goods, semiconductors and other goods declined 11.4% last year but still exceeded $100 billion. Exports to China support just under 1 million American jobs, according to the U.S.-China Business Council, though that was down 10% from 2017’s peak.”

Pew Research: “While more Americans say the U.S. is the world’s leading economy (52%) than say the same of China (32%), views of U.S. economic superiority declined 7 percentage points over the past four months.”

Trump’s inconsistent China strategy puts our national security at risk, and he’s only acting tough on China now ahead of the election.

Foreign Policy: “Trump’s Flip-Flops On China Are A Danger To National Security”

New York Times: “With President Trump trailing badly in the polls as the election nears, his national security officials have intensified their attack on China in recent weeks, targeting its officials, diplomats and executives. While the strategy has reinforced a key campaign message, some American officials, worried Mr. Trump will lose, are also trying to engineer irreversible changes, according to people familiar with the thinking.”

It is no wonder Beijing wants Trump to win reelection.

CNBC: “Beijing Would Prefer Trump Be Reelected As It Gives China An Advantage Internationally, Analyst Says”

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This Week in Iran Policy

31 Jul

Office of the Spokesperson

“Today, I expanded the scope of Iran metals sanctions targeting Iran’s nuclear, military, and ballistic missile programs. Knowingly transferring any of these 22 metals to Iran is now sanctionable. Our pressure will continue until Iran behaves like a normal nation.”

–Secretary Pompeo, Tweet, July 30, 2020

STATEMENT BY SECRETARY POMPEO ON THE EXPANSION OF THE SCOPE OF IRAN METALS SANCTIONS TARGETING IRAN’S NUCLEAR, MILITARY, AND BALLISTIC MISSILE PROGRAMS AND THE IRGC, JULY 30.

Iran’s nuclear, ballistic missile, and military programs pose a grave threat to international peace and security. To address these threats, I am announcing a major expansion of the scope of State Department-administered Iran metals-related sanctions. Today, the State Department is identifying 22 specific materials used in connection with Iran’s nuclear, military, or ballistic missile programs. Those who knowingly transfer such materials to Iran are now sanctionable pursuant to Section 1245 of the Iranian Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act.

Under the same provision of law, I am continuing my determination that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) controls Iran’s construction sector. The IRGC’s construction firm and many of its subsidiaries remain sanctioned by the United Nations because they were directly involved in the construction of the uranium enrichment site at Fordow. As a result of this IRGC determination, any knowing transfer of certain materials, including graphite or raw or semi-finished metals, to or from Iran to be used in connection with the construction sector of Iran remains sanctionable.

The 22 materials I have determined are used in connection with Iran’s nuclear, military, or ballistic missile programs are here.

SECRETARY POMPEO’S REMARKS BEFORE THE SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE, JULY 30.

· First, securing the American people’s freedoms against authoritarian threats; securing American lives during the pandemic; and helping friends across the world secure those very unalienable rights. On authoritarian threats, we have evaluated the world with the same realism that the American founders did.

· We see the Islamic Republic of Iran for what it is: an aggressor, not a victim.

· We’ve gone full bore on our maximum pressure campaign.

· Since May of 2018, we’ve slashed the vital oil revenues the regime uses for terrorism and illegal nuclear activities by 90 percent. We’ve rallied nations to our side through diplomacy – witness the designations of Hizballah from European and South American countries. And we’ve bolstered our military readiness vis-a-vis Tehran.

· There’s more work to do. The Security Council must renew the UN arms embargo against Iran before it expires on October 18th. Iran already mines ships in the Strait of Hormuz, launches missiles at Saudi oil facilities, and ships arms to the Houthis.

· Should the Security Council fail to act, Iran will have a freer hand to sow destruction across the Middle East, and indeed the world.

· For the entirety of remarks, please see here.

SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR IRAN AND SENIOR ADVISOR TO THE SECRETARY BRIAN HOOK TRAVELED TO TUNISIA, QATAR, AND KUWAIT TO DISCUSS EXTENDING THE UN ARMS EMBARGO ON IRAN, JULY 27.

· On July 24-26, Special Representative for Iran and Senior Advisor to the Secretary Brian Hook traveled to Tunisia, Qatar, and Kuwait to discuss extending the UN arms embargo on Iran, which is scheduled to expire on October 18, 2020. In Tunisia, Special Representative Hook met with Foreign Minister Noureddine Erray. He discussed the range of threats Iran poses to international peace and security and requested Tunisia’s support as a non-permanent member of the Security Council to extend the arms embargo. In Qatar and Kuwait, Special Representative Hook discussed the need to extend the arms embargo to preclude a regional arms race and halt Iran’s destabilizing activities in the region. He also emphasized the benefits of regional cooperation and reiterated the need for members of the Gulf Cooperation Council to take steps to rebuild trust and restore unity. In Doha, he met with Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed Al Thani. In Kuwait City, he met with His Highness Prime Minister Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah and Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Ahmad Nasser al-Mohammad Al Sabah.

· Special Representative Hook traveled to Estonia and the United Kingdom on July 28-29 for consultations with our European allies.

NOTABLE TWEETS

@SecPompeo July 30

The Iranian regime is fixated on a hateful, bankrupt ideology. While the leaders of normal nations promote the prosperity of their people, the current regime promotes division and anti-Semitism. Iranians deserve better.

@StateDeputySPOX July 30

@SecPompeo announced that knowingly transferring graphite or raw or semi-finished metal to Iran’s IRGC-controlled construction sector is sanctionable. We haven’t forgotten that the IRGC’s construction firm built the uranium enrichment site at Fordow.

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Americans See Through Trump’s ‘New Tone,’ Overwhelmingly Disapprove of His Coronavirus Response

31 Jul

As his poll numbers reached record lows due to his handling of the coronavirus, Trump and his allies touted a “new tone,” but new polling makes it clear that Trump’s failures speak louder than his empty words. Americans know that Trump’s failed leadership caused the coronavirus to get out of hand, and he’s only making things worse.

Trump returned to holding coronavirus briefings as a way to improve his poll numbers, but a new poll shows the American people disapprove of how he’s handled the coronavirus crisis in the country. 

ABC News: “Nearly two-thirds of Americans disapprove of President Donald Trump’s handling of three major challenges facing the country — the coronavirus pandemic, nationwide unrest over racial inequality and relations with Russia — in a new ABC News/Ipsos poll, a sign of the obstacles that his reelection bid faces just three months before Election Day.”

Trump’s failure to successfully put together a strategy let the coronavirus get out of control. Now, as work on a vaccine progresses, officials fear a lack of strategy from the administration may hinder its rollout.

Reuters: “As scientists and pharmaceutical companies work at breakneck speed to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus, public health officials and senior U.S. lawmakers are sounding alarms about the Trump administration’s lack of planning for its nationwide distribution.”

Reuters: “‘We have not heard anything from the federal government since April 23,’ Danielle Koenig, health promotion supervisor for the Washington State Department of Health, said in an email. … ‘We urgently await federal, state and local collaborative discussions to identify challenges and plan solutions. A vaccination campaign of this magnitude is unprecedented and it’s going to take more than an army,’ Hannan said on Tuesday, referring to Trump’s repeated statements that the U.S. military stands ready to deliver vaccines.”

The White House sought to implement a new hospital data system, but after the administration bungled the rollout, hospitals are now scrambling to treat the influx of new patients while also dealing with delayed and inconsistent data. 

NPR: “Earlier this month, when the Trump administration told hospitals to send crucial data about coronavirus cases and intensive care capacity to a new online system, it promised the change would be worth it. The data would be more complete, transparent, and an improvement over the old platform run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, administration officials said. Instead, the public data hub created under the new system is updated erratically and is rife with inconsistencies and errors, data analysts say.”

NPR: “‘If the information is not accurate, it could cost time — and lives,’ says Lisa M. Lee, formerly the chief science officer for public health surveillance at CDC, now at Virginia Tech. For instance, knowing which hospitals have the capacity to take on new patients is critical, she explains. ‘If all the ICU beds are taken up, emergency medical personnel need to take [new patients] to the next town over or to the next county.’”

Trump often touts his administration’s ability to acquire a large supply of ventilators in order to deal with the rise of coronavirus, but new evidence suggests he overspent by as much as $500 million for tens of thousands of them. 

NBC News: “But internal emails and documents obtained by Democrats on the House Oversight Committee suggest that the Trump administration failed to enforce an existing contract with a major medical manufacturer, delayed negotiations for more than a month and subsequently overpaid as much as $500 million for tens of thousands of the devices — a costly error at a time when officials from some of the biggest states were warning of shortages.”

NBC News: “White House trade adviser Peter Navarro, who recently criticized the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as having ‘been wrong about everything,’ negotiated the new contract at almost five times the price the Obama administration paid. The devices Navarro purchased were ‘functionally identical’ to the previous ones, according to Food and Drug Administration approvals in the report.”

As Americans struggle to get tested for the coronavirus, a new report found that the Trump administration decided not to implement a national testing strategy for political reasons.  

Vanity Fair: “Most troubling of all, perhaps, was a sentiment the expert said a member of Kushner’s team expressed: that because the virus had hit blue states hardest, a national plan was unnecessary and would not make sense politically. ‘The political folks believed that because it was going to be relegated to Democratic states, that they could blame those governors, and that would be an effective political strategy,’ said the expert.”

Contact tracing is a key way to slow down the spread of the coronavirus, but because the Trump administration failed to make testing easily available with quick results, tracers have been unable to reach many of those infected.

New York Times: “Contact tracing, a cornerstone of the public health arsenal to tamp down the coronavirus across the world, has largely failed in the United States; the virus’s pervasiveness and major lags in testing have rendered the system almost pointless.”

New York Times: “‘I think it’s easy to say contact tracing is broken,’ said Carolyn Cannuscio, an expert on the method and an associate professor of family medicine and community health at the University of Pennsylvania. ‘It is broken because so many parts of our prevention system are broken.’”

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On Sanctioning Human Rights Abusers in Xinjiang, China

31 Jul

Michael R. Pompeo, Secretary of State

The Chinese Communist Party’s human rights abuses in Xinjiang, China against Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities rank as the stain of the century. The Trump Administration has led the world’s effort to impose tangible costs on the PRC’s continuous campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, intrusive surveillance, forced labor, forced population control, involuntary collection of biometric data, and genetic analyses targeted at these groups. Today, we are continuing that record of principled action.

On July 9, 2020, the United States designated Chen Quanguo, the current First Party Secretary of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps (XPCC), a paramilitary organization subordinate to the CCP, for his connection to serious human rights abuse in Xinjiang. Following his arrival in the region, Chen Quanguo began implementing a comprehensive surveillance, detention, and indoctrination program in Xinjiang, targeting Uyghurs and members of other ethnic minorities. The XPCC has been directly involved in implementing these measures. Today, the U.S. has imposed sanctions on the XPCC.

The U.S. also sanctioned today Sun Jinlong, former Party Secretary of the XPCC, and Peng Jiarui, Deputy Party Secretary and Commander of the XPCC. They were designated pursuant to Executive Order 13818, which builds upon and implements the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act. These actions will also restrict the ability of Sun Jinlong and Peng Jiarui to travel to the United States.

Today’s designations are the latest U.S. government action in an ongoing effort to deter human rights abuse in the Xinjiang region. We call on all countries to join us in condemning the CCP’s heinous abuse of the human rights of its own citizens, affecting countless families across the world.

For more information regarding this action, please see the press release issued today by the Department of the Treasury.

 

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On the Occasion of Eid al-Adha

31 Jul

Michael R. Pompeo, Secretary of State

On the occasion of Eid al-Adha, we wish Muslims in the United States and around the world Eid Mubarak.  Eid al-Adha is a time for compassion, generosity, and sacrifice – values demonstrated by Abraham’s commitment to God.  Eid marks the end of Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca normally performed by millions of Muslims from all corners of the world. We recognize the great disappointment felt by many prospective pilgrims this year and hope you will have the opportunity to perform Hajj in the near future.

As with religious observances of many faith communities during this pandemic, Eid al-Adha and Hajj will be unusual this year. We applaud the efforts and devotion of Muslims around the world to stop the pandemic’s spread and serve those in need while maintaining physical distancing. The United States will continue to advocate for the unalienable rights of all people, including the right to religious freedom, and we call upon all countries to respect and uphold these universal rights.

On behalf of the United States Department of State, I wish you a happy and blessed Eid al-Adha.

 

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