ZOA Praises Congressional Moves to Defund Abbas’ P.A. Following Its Violation of Oslo Accords By Pursuing Statehood at U.N.
ZOA has praised bipartisan efforts by legislators, led by Senators Lindsey Graham (R–SC), Chuck Schumer (D–NY), John Barrasso (R–WY), and Robert Menendez (D–NJ), to defund Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) following the PA’s violation of the Oslo Accords. (By going to the UN to win a vote of statehood by a non-binding General Assembly resolution, the PA has violated the 1995 Oslo II Article 31.7, which plainly states, “Neither side shall initiate or take any step that will change the status of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip pending the outcome of the permanent status negotiations”).
Senators Graham, Schumer, Barrasso and Menendez call in their bill for the immediate closure of the PLO’s office in Washington unless the PA enter into peace negotiations with Israel and also eliminates American assistance to the PA if the International Criminal Court “adjudicates any matter proposed or supported by the Palestinian Authority.”
Senator Graham said, “We will not use American taxpayer dollars to support a Palestinian entity whose primary goal, if they file a complaint in the ICC, is to marginalize the Jewish state rather than live in peace with the people of Israel.”
Senator Schumer said: “Over the past year, Palestinian leaders have indicated an intention to apply for full membership in the International Criminal Court and over a dozen other international institutions in order to assert Palestinian claims against Israel. These unhelpful efforts would not only unfairly target our Israeli ally, but would devastate efforts to resume the peace process and do possibly irreparable harm to those international institutions. We stand united in preventing this from happening, and will do everything in our power to block the Palestinians from using the International Criminal Court and other international bodies to assert Palestinian claims against Israel.”
Senator Barrasso said, “The best path to a true and lasting peace is through direct negotiations between the two parties — not through manipulations at the United Nations … If the Palestinians move forward with this irresponsible plan, they will violate international agreements, undermine the peace process and threaten the security of our ally.”
Senator Menendez said, “This unilateral approach by the Palestinian Authority to gaining sovereignty is provocative, reckless and threatens to inflame passions throughout the region … We will not stand idly by and allow the Palestinians to evade the peace process by pressing their political cause through alternate means and we will not provide financial support, or political support in the form of offices in the U.S., if the Palestinians aren’t serious about pursuing real peace through real negotiations. The choice is theirs” (‘GRAHAM-SCHUMER-BARRASSO- MENENDEZ TAKE TOUGH LINE AGAINST PALESTINE BID AT UNITED NATIONS: Legislation Forces Closure of PLO Office in Washington and sets Tough New Conditions Paving Way for Elimination of Assistance,’ Senator Schumer press release, November 29, 2012).
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “We praise this bipartisan quartet of senators for immediately initiating action to respond appropriately and effectively to the PA’s violation of the Oslo accords last week by attempting to achieve statehood without making peace with Israel.
“For 19 years, the PA has been flouting its commitments under the signed Oslo agreements with impunity, continuing to incite Palestinian society, especially Palestinian youth, to hatred and violence against Israel, while glorifying terrorists; neither dismantling terrorist groups nor arresting terrorists; educating its public for war and confrontation, not peace, and insisting on legally baseless, anti-peace policies like the so-called ‘right of return.’ All this has taken place for years without the PA incurring any penalty or cost from the U.S.
“With its latest negation of Oslo and circumvention of negotiations, the PA should be subject to the sternest possible penalties in terms of U.S. funding and diplomatic support. We praise Senators Graham, Schumer, Barrasso and Menendez for taking a very important step in this direction.”
Filed Under: Politics
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