WASHINGTON – In response to the escalating cycle of violence between Israelis and Palestinians in Jerusalem that has led to Hamas firing rockets indiscriminately into Israel, including several toward Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, U.S. Senators Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Bob Menendez (D-N.J) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) condemned attacks on civilians, and called for renewed efforts toward a lasting peace. Cardin is Chair of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, Menendez is Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Wyden is Chair of the Senate Finance Committee.
“Ongoing rocket attacks from Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad are terrorism and no country should have to tolerate this kind of threat against its population. Israel has every right to self-defense and we mourn all the innocent Israeli and Palestinian civilians who have lost their lives.
“Israeli and Palestinian political and military leaders must actively discourage any actions that provoke more violence, and the Israel Police must take steps to lower tensions throughout Jerusalem. Unilateral actions by any party that take us further away from the prospect of a durable peace through direct negotiations must cease. We applaud the decision of the Supreme Court to delay the hearing regarding potential eviction of Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan neighborhoods of Jerusalem.
“We are committed to sustaining a U.S.-Israel relationship based on shared democratic values and our vital security partnership. We are also committed to continuing to engage Israelis and Palestinians to find ways to live together with peace, freedom, security and dignity; and achieve a two-state solution, as the Biden administration has set out to do following decades of consistent US policy. A sustainable peace that ensures the long-term security of Israel and self-determination for Palestinians is the only viable outcome for the region.
“As supporters of last year’s Abraham Accords as a way to cement Israel’s permanent place in the region and halt unilateral annexation, we call on all responsible parties to take steps to de-escalate and find ways back to negotiations.”