Senators Reject Palestinian Attempts to Delegitimize Israel and Bypass Peace Efforts

AIPAC Press Release
Senators Reject Palestinian Attempts to Delegitimize Israel and Bypass Peace Efforts

January 29, 2015

AIPAC strongly praises the bipartisan group of 75 senators who sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry rejecting Palestinian efforts to seek an investigation of Israel at the International Criminal Court (ICC) and United Nations (U.N.) state member status via the U.N. Security Council. In the letter, initiated by Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), the senators promise not to support assistance to the Palestinian Authority (PA) while the administration undertakes a review of the Palestinians’ actions at the ICC.

For almost a year, the PA has rebuffed Secretary Kerry’s efforts to promote peace through bilateral negotiations with Israel. Instead, the Palestinians have sought to bypass talks and to pursue counterproductive actions at the U.N. Security Council and the ICC – in direct violation of their commitments to negotiate peace. The Palestinian effort to seek an ICC investigation of Israel is a direct attempt to delegitimize Israel’s right to self-defense against Hamas terror.

In the letter, the senators applaud the administration’s previous rejection of the PA’s bid for state member status at the U.N., and urge Secretary Kerry “to make clear, publicly and privately, that the United States will veto any unilateral resolutions brought before the Security Council related to Palestinian statehood.”

In recognizing Israel as a “major strategic partner” of the United States, the senators warn of pressure to delegitimize “the very existence” of the Jewish state. The letter specifically characterizes PA President Abbas’ actions at the ICC as “intended to directly challenge Israel’s legitimate right to defend its citizens and territory.” It also calls upon the administration to speak out “in unambiguous support for Israel’s right to protect its citizens” and to “highlight Hamas’ ongoing support for terrorism.”

Finally, the letter underscores that direct negotiations between the Palestinians and Israel offer the only “realistic and sustainable path” toward resolving the conflict.

 Click here for a link to the text of the letter.