Unless a copyright is indicated, information on State Department websites is in the public domain and may be copied and distributed without permission. Citation of the U.S. State Department as source of the information is appreciated.
If a copyright is indicated on a photo, graphic, or other material, permission to copy these materials must be obtained from the original source. For photos without captions or with only partial captions, hold your cursor over the photo to view the "alt tag" for any copyright information. Please note that many photos used on this website are copyrighted. Only State Department photos are in the public domain.
U.S. State Department seals, the U.S. Great Seal, logos, and other official insignia may not be used or reproduced without written permission. Use of the Great Seal of the United States is governed by Public Law 91-651, Title 18 of the United States Code. This is a criminal statute with penal provisions, prohibiting certain uses of the Great Seal that would convey or reasonably be calculated to convey a false impression of sponsorship or approval by the Government of the United States or any department, agency, or instrumentality thereof.
Although the Secretary of State is custodian of the Seal, the Department of State has no authority to grant or withhold permission for use of reproductions, facsimiles, or likenesses of the Seal, or any part thereof. It depends on the circumstances in each case whether the particular use of the Seal would be improper and, as such, it is a function of the Department of Justice to determine whether any particular use violates the Statute. Consequently, the Department of State's policy has been to discourage use of the Great Seal, except when used for governmental or educational purposes, and the Department does not provide artwork for its use other than for official State Department material. Contact us if you have any questions on use of the Great Seal or other official insignia.
Most country and regional maps on this site were created by the CIA and are in the public domain. Names and boundary representation are not necessarily authoritative. Learn more at https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook.
The 2009-2017.state.gov website serves as the State Department’s portal of information on U.S. foreign policy and information about the State Department. It is managed by the Office of Website Management, Bureau of Public Affairs. Phone: 703-875-4029.
Every effort has been made to provide accurate and complete information. However, we cannot guarantee that there will be no errors. Neither the U.S. Government nor the State Department assumes any legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product, or process disclosed herein, or represents that use of such information, product, or process would not infringe on privately owned rights.
The current State Department website covers the Administration of President Barack Obama since he took office on January 20, 2009. The Department's archive sites provide content available online prior to that date. The archive sites are not updated, and external links may no longer function; they provide publications and information from the State Department for archive and research purposes.
Websites of U.S. embassies, consulates, and other posts abroad (listed at http://usembassy.state.gov) are managed by those posts.