WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Leaders of both parties in the U.S. House of Representatives are circulating a resolution calling for sanctions against the Palestinian Authority if it pursues statehood recognition and remains reconciled with Hamas.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Half the Democratic caucus in the U.S. Senate urged President Obama to suspend assistance to the Palestinian Authority unless Hamas recognizes Israel and renounces terrorism.
"It is imperative for you to make clear to President Abbas that Palestinian Authority participation in a unity government with an unreformed Hamas will jeopardize its relationship with the United States, including its receipt of U.S. aid," said the letter sent May 6 to Obama and signed by 27 Democratic senators.
J Street, wrapping up its second national conference today, will fan out over Capitol Hill for a round of lobbying meetings that will deliver a message that could – at least in part -- could warm AIPAC's heart: don't cut aid to Israel.
That, along with a call to continue aid to the Palestinian Authority in the interests of a two-state solution, is the sole “ask” in about 250 Hill meetings – mostly local J Streeters going to their own representatives offices, taking another page out of AIPAC's play book.
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s bill is meant "to counter attempts by Rice/State to deal with unity government, "
James D. Besser
With the pace of U.S. Mideast diplomacy quickening, the congressional battle over aid and diplomatic contact with the Palestinian Authority may be about to erupt anew as a leading pro-Israel congresswoman tries to throw new hurdles in the path of the Bush administration.
Late last week the office of Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) — the ranking Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee — floated new legislation toughening sanctions on the PA in the wake of last month’s establishment of a “unity government.”