Integrity Legal

Posts Tagged ‘Bali’

22nd July 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the United States Secretary of State has recently been noted for her positive comments regarding a draft agreement between China and certain Southeast Asian Nations pertaining to the South China Sea. In order to provide further information it is necessary to quote directly from the official website of the Associated Press, AP.org:

BALI, Indonesia (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s is praising a preliminary agreement between China and Southeast Asian Nations to peacefully resolve competing territorial claims in the strategic South China Sea. At a meeting with China’s foreign minister on the sidelines of a Southeast Asian regional security forum in Bali, Indonesia on Friday, Clinton commended the two sides for reaching the deal, which aims to prevent conflict over several disputed islands and potential oil and gas resources. The U.S. has said peaceful resolution to the claims is an American national security interest…

This blogger asks readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above to learn more.

Readers may recall that recent discussions within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) have revolved around issues pertaining to disputes in the South China Sea. It would appear as though American officials have taken note of recent positive developments. It should be noted that there have also been discussions centering upon the idea of an ASEAN Visa Area similar to the Schengen Visa Program. That stated, there has yet to be any type of finalized agreement related to that issue.

Meanwhile, it would appear as though multiple mainstream and alternative media outlets have been discussing issues related to the struggle for LGBT Equality to best bring home this point it it necessary to quote directly from the website of The Atlantic, TheAtlantic.com:

The portentously named “Respect for Marriage Act” is a short, sweet bill that would repeal the equally portentously named “Defense of Marriage Act,” or DOMA, passed in 1996 by an overwhelming bipartisan majority and signed into law by then-President Bill Clinton. Sponsored and championed at the time by a Georgia Republican congressman named Bob Barr, DOMA wrote into federal law two key concepts: first, for federal purposes, the word “marriage” would mean only a legal union between one man and one woman; and second, no state had to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex that had been performed in any other state or jurisdiction. The “Respect for Marriage Act”, or the DOMA repeal bill, would let the feds return to their traditional practice of recognizing any state’s valid marriages — which would include same-sex marriages made in the six states (and district of Columbia) that currently perform them.

The administration of this blog asks readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above to read this interesting article in detail.

This was, in this blogger’s opinion, a very insightful article, but this blogger’s question would be: since when do the “feds” get to deviate from their so-called “traditional practice” of recognizing validly legalized and/or solemnized marriages occurring in purely intra-State jurisdiction? For this is the fundamental question pertaining to the issue of Section 3 of the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA). The Commonwealth of Massachusetts‘s right to marry individual’s within said jurisdiction would appear to be virtually “allodial” compared to the (somewhat spurious) claim that said marriages can effectively be abrogated via federal “non-recognition”.

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14th July 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that United States President Barack Obama is apparently set to attend an upcoming ASEAN summit in Bali, Indonesia. In order to provide further information regarding such developments it is necessary to quote directly from the Jakarta Updates website, JakartaUpdates.com:

United States President Barack Obama is scheduled to attend the ASEAN Summit in Bali in September 2011. Obama’s arrival is hoped to bring a positive image for Bali and Indonesia in general in particular after the 2002 Bali bombing. “The arrival of President Obama is hoped to foster the trust of the international community regarding the security aspects of Indonesia and especially Bali’s readiness to hold a world-class event,” said a member of Commission IV DPRD Bali, Tjokorda Raka Kerthyasa, in Denpasar, on Tuesday (12/07/2011). According to Kerthyasa, this visit will have a very positive impact not only great for tourism in Bali, but also for Indonesia. That will mean Indonesian security has been acknowledged and Bali is considered a very special place…

The administration of this web log encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to read this article in detail.

This news comes upon the heels of a recent trip by the Chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff to China. Clearly, both of these developments illustrate the increasing importance of the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) jurisdictions (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam) and China. These events are also a testament to the increasing global economic dominance of Asia in general. Hopefully the discussions held at this upcoming summit will result in tangible benefits for the American people and the people of those nations which are members of ASEAN.

In news pertaining to the struggle for LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) Equality it recently came to this blogger’s attention that a highly respected advocacy organization for the cause of LGBT Equality recently submitted a brief to a New York Court in support of the rights of a same sex bi-national couple. To provide further insight it is necessary to quote directly from a press release posted upon the official website of Lambda Legal, LambdaLegal.org:

(New York, July 12, 2011) – Yesterday, Lambda Legal filed an amicus brief in a case involving Cristina Ojeda and Monica Alcota, a married binational lesbian couple from Queens, New York. The friend-of-the-court brief argues that immigration officials are incorrectly relying on an inapplicable case for authority to continue deportation proceedings while the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is being challenged…In the brief filed yesterday, Lambda Legal argues that USCIS cannot insulate itself from legal and political developments surrounding both DOMA and a 1982 case, Adams v. Howerton. Adams has been superseded by intervening legal and legislative developments including the emergence of jurisdictions where marriage or civil unions of same-sex couples are recognized, and ongoing federal court cases challenging the constitutionality of DOMA. Finally, since the law surrounding DOMA is developing, the brief urges immigration officials to administratively close or postpone all pending immigration matters involving married same-sex couples until DOMA is repealed or declared unconstitutional. Absent DOMA, there is no legal impediment to extending immigration protections to Ms. Alcota and spouses in similarly-situated same-sex couples…

The administration of this web log adamantly encourages those interested to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above to read about these developments. As a practical matter, “administrative closure” has been used in the past with respect to the K-3 visa (a United States travel document somewhat akin to the K-1 visa although designed for the foreign spouse of an American Citizen) where the underlying I-130 (the petition form for a CR-1 visa or an IR-1 visa) sees adjudication and arrival at the National Visa Center prior to, or contemporaneously with, the I-129f petition package. Therefore, usage of administrative closing in an immigration context is not altogether unheard of. That said, whether such a mechanism will ultimately be utilized under these circumstances remains to be seen.

As noted previously on this blog, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) did attempt to place a hold upon deportations involving same sex bi-national couples. However, that hold was apparently rescinded by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) citing the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA) as a valid reason for such action. Thereafter, it was noted that the Attorney General of the United States, Eric Holder, vacated a finding for deportation in a case before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) involving a couple who had entered into a same sex civil union in the sovereign State of  New Jersey. It was recently noted that United States Bankruptcy Courts appear poised to begin adjudicating bankruptcy petitions from same sex couples. All of these developments have occurred contemporaneously with news that the Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate is preparing to hold hearings regarding the possible repeal of DOMA and the ramifications of adopting legislation such as the Respect for Marriage Act. The Respect for Marriage Act would hopefully provide federal recognition of a same sex marriage legalized and/or solemnized by an American State which permits such unions.

Strictly within the context of American immigration it should be noted that Representative Jerrold Nadler has introduced legislation such as the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA) in order to remedy the current legal discrimination imposed upon the LGBT community. Furthermore, it would appear that Representative Mike Honda‘s Reuniting Families Act includes UAFA-like language which would attempt to correct the current inequities borne by same-sex bi-national couples.

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5th July 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Union of Myanmar (sometimes colloquially referred to as Burma) may soon see some new direct flights between Yangon (Rangoon) and other cities in Southern Asia, In order to provide further insight into these developments it might be prudent to quote directly from the official website of the Peoples’ Daily Online, PeopleDaily.com.cn:

Myanmar Airways International (MAI) will launch a direct flight service to link Yangon with Jakarta and Bali in November this year, the local Weekly Eleven reported Monday. Aimed at boosting bilateral trade between the two countries, the planned direct flight is prompted by the Myanmar President U Thein Sein’s recent visit to Indonesia in May this year. As part of the cooperation between the two countries in the tourism sector and for both having historic cultural heritage, beautiful scenery and beaches, Thein Sein said plan is also underway to launch Yangon-Singapore-Jakarta flights which will be finalized at the second meeting of the joint commission for bilateral cooperation to be held in Myanmar at this year-end…[sic]

The administration of this web log encourages readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above to read this story in detail.

As a member of the ten member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Myanmar seems to have become increasingly integrated into the broader Southeast Asian economy. This current situation stands in rather stark contrast to that nation’s position in the relatively recent past. As mundane as airline routes may seem to the casual reader at first glance it should be noted that such events can have tremendous implications for business travelers and can also result in wholly new business opportunities as it becomes increasing less difficult to travel to a particular destination. All of the ramifications of this announcement remain to be seen, but it seems likely that there will be positive economic benefits for all of the jurisdictions concerned.

Meanwhile, in news pertaining to the United States and the United Kingdom it recently came to this blogger’s attention that London is home to a new statue honoring a former President of the United States of America. In order to shed further light upon this situation it may be best to quote directly from an article written by Ravi Somaiya and posted on the official website of The New York Times, NYTimes.com:

LONDON — Passers-by at the American Embassy, in the heart of London’s upscale Mayfair district, were greeted Monday morning by the disembodied voice of Ronald Reagan drifting through the air from large speakers — a prelude to the unveiling of a $1 million bronze statue of the former president here to commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth…The statue of a smiling Reagan, dressed in a crisp suit, was paid for by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation as part of a worldwide effort to promote his legacy, according to the organization’s executive director. Similar events have been held in the last few days in Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary…

This blogger asks readers to click on the relevant hyperlinks above in order to read this interesting article in full.

It would appear that many around the globe feel as though President Reagan was deserving of an enduring tribute for his efforts to further the cause of international freedom. Hopefully the statue noted above will act as a long term reminder of the need to be ever vigilante in the struggle to maintain the principles of liberty and justice.

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