Washington, DC - The Department of State’s Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO) announces the design/build construction award for a new U.S. Consulate General in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico to B.L. Harbert, International of Birmingham, Alabama.

Washington, DC - We are deeply concerned by the detention and ongoing questioning of Bahraini opposition leader Shaikh Ali Salman. Opposition parties that peacefully voice criticism of the government play a vital role in inclusive, pluralistic states and societies. We are concerned that this action against a senior leader of the opposition will only inflame tensions.

Washington, DC - The United States strongly condemns today’s suicide attacks against a peaceful local gathering in Ibb, Yemen, which killed over 30 people, including children, who were celebrating a religious holiday. We extend our deepest condolences to the families of those killed and wounded in the attack.

Puerto Cortes, Honduras - Law enforcement intercepted thousands of pieces of wood, concealing approximately 423 kilograms of cocaine, in Honduras December 22. The interception was part of a multi-agency law enforcement effort targeting transnational drug trafficking organizations. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Assistant Attaché Office in Honduras, the Honduran National Police's Transnational Criminal Investigative Unit and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) participated in the enforcement effort.

Washington, DC - We are deeply concerned about the latest reports of detentions and arrests by Cuban authorities of peaceful civil society members and activists, including Luis Quintana Rodriguez, Antonio Rodiles, Danilo Maldonado, Reinaldo Escobar, Marcelino Abreu Bonora and Eliecer Avila. We strongly condemn the Cuban government’s continued harassment and repeated use of arbitrary detention, at times with violence, to silence critics, disrupt peaceful assembly and freedom expression, and intimidate citizens.

Washington, DC - The United States is aware of reports of a coup attempt today in The Gambia.