Today, US Representatives Jan Schakowsky, Ted Deutch, David Price, and Brad Schneider led 185 of their House Democratic colleagues in a letter to the Israeli government expressing concern over potential efforts to unilaterally annex parts of the West Bank and calling on Israel to reconsider its annexation plan.
The letter, addressed to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Alternate Prime Minister and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi, highlights the long-standing bipartisan support for the US-Israel relationship and commitment to a two-state solution achieved through direction negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians.
“Our fear is that unilateral actions, taken by either side, will push the parties further from negotiations and the possibility of a final, negotiated agreement,” the Members of Congress write.
The letter references two votes in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2019 – House Resolution 246 and House Resolution 326 – in which House Democrats overwhelmingly approved language supporting the two state solution and the historic bilateral relationship between the US and Israel, reaffirming Congressional support for Israel’s security, and recognizing the Palestinian right to self-determination.
The Members of Congress caution that unilateral annexation would likely “risks insecurity in Jordan, with serious ancillary risks to Israel,” and “could create serious problems for Israel with its European friends and other partners around the world:”
“We do not see how any of these acute risks serve the long-term interest of a strong, secure Israel,” they wrote.
The letter concludes, “As committed partners in supporting and protecting the special US-Israel relationship, we express our deep concern with the stated intention to move ahead with any unilateral annexation of West Bank territory, and we urge your government to reconsider plans to do so.”