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Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Cal

This fiscal year, only 48 Iraqis who helped American troops overseas have been granted refugee status — down from more than 3,000 last year and around 5,100 the year before, Reuters' Yeganeh Torbati reports.

Why it matters: This refugee program was specifically designed to encourage locals in Iraq to provide aide and intelligence to the U.S. military or media, and many have risked their lives to do so. Pentagon officials told Reuters they fear cutting the number of approved refugees would lead to a national security risk as locals would have less of an incentive.

Between the lines: The holdup seems to be from the FBI, which conducts special deep background checks on Iraqis who apply for the refugee program. Officials told Reuters that there had been a sharp increase in suspicious information found with these background checks that have led to the drop in Iraqi refugees. There are also new requirements in place for refugees from 10 countries, most of which are majority-Muslim.

The bigger picture: Overall refugee admissions have plunged under Trump. Per Reuters, his administration is "on track to admit about 22,000 refugees this year, approximately half of the maximum allowed" under his new, lower refugee ceiling.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
3 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Key clean power provision likely won't survive in Dems' spending bill

A construction worker walks along a dirt road at the Avangrid Renewables La Joya wind farm in Encino, New Mexico, on Aug. 5, 2020. Photo: Cate Dingley/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A pillar of Democrats' plans to speed deployment of zero-carbon electricity is likely to be cut from major spending and tax legislation they are struggling to move on a party-line vote, per multiple reports and a Capitol Hill aide.

Driving the news: The New York Times, citing anonymous congressional aides and lobbyists, reports that West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) has told the White House he "strongly opposes" the Clean Electricity Performance Program.

Updated 5 hours ago - World

Fatal stabbing of British MP David Amess declared a terrorist incident

Police outside Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea, England, on Oct. 15. Photo: John Keeble/Getty Images

Authorities have declared the death of David Amess a terrorist incident, hours after the Conservative Party lawmaker in the U.K. was fatally stabbed while meeting with local constituents in a church in eastern England on Friday.

The big picture: The Metropolitan Police has found "a potential motivation linked to Islamist extremism."

Biden: DOJ should prosecute those who defy Jan. 6 subpoenas

President Biden speaks with reporters at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden said Friday that the Justice Department should prosecute those who defy subpoenas from the Jan. 6 select committee.

Why it matters: The president's remarks come one day after Donald Trump ally Steve Bannon failed to show up for a deposition before the committee.