US State Department Lifts 'Assignment Restrictions' Used To Discourage Foreign Recruiting
The US State Department has lifted so-called 'assignment restrictions' which prevented employees - some of whom would hold top-secret clearances - from serving in countries they had immigrated from, or have family or financial relationship with, after Democratic lawmakers said it was discriminatory - particularly against Chinese and Pacific Islander employees.
The move follows a 2021 bill introduced by Reps. Ted Lieu (D-CA), Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Andy Kim (D-NJ) and Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA), who have discarded national security concerns to end a practice that "disproportionately impacts federal employees who can’t trace their heritage to the Mayflower and directly undermines the department’s goal of promoting diversity and inclusion," Politico reports.
State Department data reveals that around 1,800 employees are subject to assignment restrictions - with the top four countries being China (196), Russia (184), Taiwan (84) and Israel (70).
According to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the change came after he lifted more than half of the restrictions during his first year in office, which opened "new possible assignments" for hundreds of US diplomats.
"Today, I’m pleased to share that after a rigorous review, I have decided that, moving forward, the Department will end its practice of issuing new assignment restrictions as a condition placed on a security clearance."
Those currently subject to assignment restrictions will be allowed to go through a new review and appeal process. That said, some restrictions will remain in place, such as those related to a situation "in which a foreign country may consider an employee to be one of their own nationals," or when there are "assignments to posts rated critical for human intelligence threats."
Perhaps all those millions of dollars which flowed from CCP-linked individuals to the Biden family are once again paying off?