In U.S. pursuit of peace talks, perilous rift opens with Afghan leader

Reuters | March 27, 2019

Washington’s relationship with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani appears increasingly at risk of permanent damage, the consequence of a U.S. policy shift that has so far excluded his government from talks with the Taliban and of his own determination to retain power and manage peace efforts himself. The feud threatens to undermine the already narrow chances for a peace accord that President Donald Trump hopes would end America’s longest war. Current and former U.S. officials tell Reuters they believe Ghani is positioning himself to perhaps be a spoiler in still-fragile negotiations, angry that the Afghan government has been kept out of talks and worried about the implications for his presidency.

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Vice President Mike Pence delivers remarks at a ceremony in Hawaii marking the repatriation of possible remains of Americans killed in Korean War.

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Vice President Mike Pence delivers remarks at a ceremony in Hawaii marking the repatriation of possible remains of Americans killed in Korean War.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

Aurigo Software Achieves Amazon Web Services Government Competency Accreditation

Aurigo Software | December 09, 2022

Aurigo Software, North America's leading capital planning and construction management solution provider, today announced it has achieved Amazon Web Services (AWS) Government Competency status. Companies included on the prestigious list have demonstrated expertise in delivering technology to help government agencies meet mandates, reduce costs, drive efficiencies, and increase innovation. Aurigo's capital program management software is used by state and local government, federal agencies, and the transportation sector to plan, build, and maintain capital assets. Achieving this accreditation differentiates Aurigo as an AWS partner with deep domain knowledge and the ability to deploy solutions seamlessly through the AWS platform. The firm is one of only 36 product-led companies worldwide to make the list. "Aurigo is honored to achieve AWS Government Competency status, This is a testament to the outstanding team at Aurigo and the deep experience we have gained partnering with government agencies to deliver mission-critical software on the AWS cloud to help them plan and build modern and resilient infrastructure." -Balaji Sreenivasan, CEO and founder of Aurigo Software. AWS provides on-demand, distributed computing services to companies, non-profits, and government organizations. The firm is recognized as the market leader in providing solutions that enable scalable, flexible, and cost-effective data processing and storage in the cloud. AWS has a history of working with major government agencies to deliver technology with the highest levels of security, reliability, and performance. To support the seamless integration and deployment of these solutions, AWS established the AWS Competency Program to help government customers identify high-quality, trusted partners that have demonstrated technical proficiency and proven success in managing government workloads. Government Competency Partners provide solutions to—and have deep experience working with—public sector customers to deliver essential applications and workflows on AWS. They provide innovative, cloud-based solutions that comply with the highest AWS standards. "This designation differentiates Aurigo as the go-to, secure solution for government agencies, We look to partner with exceptional organizations like AWS to help our customers plan and build the roads, bridges, airports, and other infrastructure their communities need. Customers can be assured that Aurigo's SaaS products run on world-class cloud infrastructure with industry-leading best practices for security and availability." -Manish Sharma, Vice President, Engineering and Security at Aurigo Software. Aurigo has implemented capital program solutions for agencies such as the Utah Department of Transportation, the cities of Las Vegas, Seattle, and Houston, Portland Water Bureau, and Dallas Area Rapid Transit. The firm is the only construction technology company listed on the StateRAMP Authorized Vendor List and has been available on the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) marketplace since 2020. About Aurigo Software: Aurigo builds software that helps build the world. Aurigo provides modern, cloud-based solutions for capital infrastructure and private owners to help plan with confidence, build with quality, and maintain their assets efficiently. With more than $300 billion of capital programs under management, Aurigo's solutions are trusted by over 300 customers in transportation, water and utilities, healthcare, higher education, and government on over 40,000 projects across North America. Aurigo helps capital program executives make better decisions based on proprietary artificial intelligence and machine learning technology. Aurigo is a privately held U.S. corporation headquartered in Austin, Texas, with global offices in Canada and India.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Borqs to Establish with the U.S. Government a Plan to Divest its Ownership of Holu Hou Energy Due to Deemed Critical Technology

Borqs | December 20, 2022

Borqs Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: BRQS, “Borqs”, or the “Company”), a global provider of 5G wireless, Internet of Things (IoT) solutions, and innovative clean energy, today announced the Company has received a letter dated December 13, 2022 (the “Letter”) from the Department of the Treasury on behalf of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (“CFIUS”) stating that the Company is required to negotiate with CFIUS to fully divest its ownership interests and rights in Holu Hou Energy LLC (“HHE”) due to HHE solar energy storage system and EnergyShare technology for Multi-Dwelling Residential Units (“MDU’s”) being deemed a critical technology and therefore a potential national security risk. As stated in the Letter, HHE is considered a top ten solar energy storage supplier in Hawaii, has only been increasing its dominant market share, expects to grow at an exponential rate, and focuses on multi-family dwelling units which are common in military housing. Due to Borqs’ IoT software development and hardware sourcing capabilities in China, CFIUS is concerned that through Borqs, the PRC could gain significant visibility and exert influence over HHE’s business operations and get access to HHE critical technology. CFIUS is requiring the Company to design a plan to mitigate all identified national security risks to the satisfaction of CFIUS. Borqs intends to comply to the requirements from CFIUS and enter into a National Security Agreement with various departments of the U.S. Government with a plan that is effective, monitorable and verifiable to voluntarily divest Borqs’ investment interests and rights in HHE (the “Plan”). HHE’s commercialization of its solar energy storage system and novel EnergyShare technology for MDU’s has enabled the company to open up a new market segment for renewable energy in the USA - likely worth several billions of dollars. In the last year the Company’s MDU development pipeline has reached thousands of individual units in Hawaii alone, with California MDU potential being at least one to two orders of magnitude higher in the coming years. One segment of this new market is for communities of military and other government personnel. The overall MDU opportunity is significant for the company and significant for the USA. Since Borqs’ financial support in HHE starting from October 2021, HHE has signed approximately $50 million in contracts and has a growing pipeline approaching half a billion dollars. We believe this voluntary mitigation will enable the tremendous inherent value of HHE to be realized and that the divestment can be a profitable transaction for Borqs’ shareholders. The Plan to mitigate will include engaging a nationally recognized investment bank with experience in administering competitive sales and auction processes, assigning and hiring of security and monitoring personnel to directly communicate with CFIUS, immediate and complete removal of all Borqs administrative and technical influence over HHE, immediate voluntary reduction of Borqs ownership of HHE from a majority to a minority position and with the target of divesting all. The Company believes such points will enable the Company to accomplish the divestment in an orderly manner. About Borqs Technologies, Inc. Borqs Technologies is a global leader in software and products for the IoT, providing customizable, differentiated and scalable Android-based smart connected devices and cloud service solutions. Borqs has achieved leadership and customer recognition as an innovative end-to-end IoT solutions provider leveraging its strategic chipset partner relationships as well as its broad software and IP portfolio. Borqs’ unique strengths include its Android and Android Wear Licenses which enabled the Company to develop a software IP library covering chipset software, Android enhancements, domain specific usage and system performance optimization, suitable for large and low volume customized products, and is also currently in development of 5G products for phones and hotspots. The Company acquired controlling shares of the solar energy storage system entity, Holu Hou Energy LLC, in October 2021. About Holu Hou Energy, LLC Holu Hou Energy, LLC, a Delaware Corporation, brings state-of-the-art renewable energy and energy storage systems to the Single-Family Residential, Multi-Dwelling Unit Residential and Commercial building markets. With operations in California, Hawaii, Wisconsin and Shanghai, HHE engineers proprietary storage system and control platform solutions, including a breakthrough “HHE Energy Share” technology that is key to development of the Multi-Dwelling Unit Residential housing market. HHE is a vital partner for investors and asset owners that are seeking ESG solutions.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Software AG Government Solutions Partners with DH2i to Deliver Certified FedRAMP Solutions for Secure Federal Government Cloud Services

Software AG Government Solutions | November 10, 2022

DH2i® the leading provider of always-secure and always-on IT infrastructure solutions, and Software AG Government Solutions, today announced they have entered into a partnership. A trusted provider of FedRAMP solutions, Software AG Government Solutions, will integrate DH2i's DxEnterprise (DxE) Smart High Availability Clustering software into its FedRAMP authorized cloud to achieve near-zero downtime within its own SQL Server Availability Group (AG) Kubernetes cluster. Software AG Government Solutions will offer the combined solution to its U.S. federal, state, and local government customers, as well as its aerospace and defense industry clients. The Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) is a government-wide program that provides a standardized approach to security assessment, authorization, and continuous monitoring for cloud products and services. FedRAMP empowers agencies to use modern cloud technologies, with emphasis on security and protection of federal information, and helps accelerate the adoption of secure, cloud solutions. "Container use is growing exponentially for digital transformation projects in the government, aerospace, and defense industries – particularly the use of stateful containers for databases such as Microsoft SQL Server. This growing stateful database container use is also generating a hard production deployment requirement for database-level high availability (HA) in Kubernetes, Using DxEnterprise to manage our SQL Server AGs in Kubernetes enables us to deliver zero downtime for our customers running our Alfabet software." -Jeff Estes, Senior Director, Systems Engineering, Software AG Government Solutions. DxEnterprise enables an enterprise's true digital transformation (DX) by speeding the adoption of highly available stateful containers and providing SQL Server Availability Group (AG) support for SQL Server containers in Kubernetes clusters. "Software AG Government Solutions is an organization known across all branches of Government for delivering only the most trusted and real-world proven technologies backed by expertise that enables customers to virtually eliminate investment risk while solving complex and critical IT challenges. It is therefore an enviable seal of approval for them to deploy DxEnterprise software as part of their FedRAMP certified solutions." -Don Boxley, CEO and Co-Founder, DH2i. DxEnterprise Smart High Availability Clustering Software Features & Benefits: HA for SQL Server Availability Groups in Kubernetes—with automatic failover, an industry first. This enables customers to deploy stateful containers to create new and innovative applications. Near-zero recovery time objective (RTO) failover for instances and containers at the database-level– enables operations to deliver better products and services more efficiently and resiliently at a lower cost to the business. Distributed Kubernetes AG clusters across availability zones/regions, hybrid cloud and multi-cloud environments—with built-in secure multi-subnet Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA) tunnel technology. This enables customers to rapidly adapt to changes in market conditions and consumer preferences. Intelligent health & performance QoS monitoring with alerts for SLA assurance and simplified system management. Mix and match support for Windows and Linux; bare-metal, virtual, cloud servers – maximizes IT budget ROI. The use of containers in the Federal Government is exploding as it looks for better ways to improve the performance, scalability, and portability of their applications in secure cloud environments. Despite the promise of containers, deploying SQL Server AGs in Kubernetes remains a hurdle that organizations struggle to overcome. Join Jeff Estes of Software AG Government Solutions for breakfast to learn how he used DH2i's DxEnterprise to jump the hurdle and deploy highly available SQL Server Availability Groups (AGs) in EKS certified for FedRAMP. (Reserve your spot here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/deploy-ha-sql-server-ags-in-eks-certified-for-fedramp-tickets-439683534287) About Software AG Government Solutions: Software AG Government Solutions is a wholly owned subsidiary of Software AG USA, Inc. We are dedicated to serving the Public Sector, Higher Education, and Aerospace & Defense communities in the United States. Our world-class software products (webMethods, Alfabet, ARIS, Cumulocity, Adabas & Natural) are focused on reducing the complexity of IT ecosystems that have evolved over many years. We help our customers understand what IT they have, how to optimize their architecture, and execute on a fully integrated modern enterprise. We leverage a highly effective "Prove IT First and Prove IT Fast" approach to solving complex IT challenges. Widely embraced by our customers, this approach has been proven to minimize risks associated with IT investments. About DH2i: DH2i Company is the leading provider of multi-platform software-defined perimeter (SDP) and smart high availability (HA) clustering software for Windows and Linux. DH2i's DxOdyssey® SDP software, the unVPN networking solution for Zero Trust security, enables users to create highly available application-level micro-tunnels across any mix of locations and platforms. DH2i's DxEnterprise® SQL Server clustering - now optimized for containers, delivers an all-in-one solution to maximize performance and minimize downtime. And, DxEnterprise is the only SQL Server clustering solution to deliver fully automatic failover of SQL Server AG in Kubernetes.

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