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Congress & the Middle East: S.R. 498

(July 17, 2014)

This resolution passed the Senate with unanimous consent and 79 co-sponsors on July 17, 2014. The measure reaffirms the fact that the United States believes that Israel has a right to defend itself from Hamas's rocket attacks. It condemns the rockets being fired at Israel from Hamas and calls for Hamas to cease all rocket attacks against Israel. It also calls on the Palestinian Authority to dissolve their unity governance agreement with Hamas.

[Congressional Bills 113th Congress] [From the U.S. Government Printing Office] [S. Res. 498 Agreed to Senate (ATS)] 113th CONGRESS 2d Session S. RES. 498

RESOLUTION Expressing the sense of the Senate regarding United States support for the State of Israel as it defends itself against unprovoked rocket attacks from the Hamas terrorist organization. Whereas Hamas is a United States-designated terrorist organization whose charter calls for the destruction of the State of Israel; Whereas Hamas continues to reject the core principles of the Middle East Quartet (the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, and Russia)--recognize Israel's right to exist, renounce violence, and accept previous Israeli-Palestinian agreements; Whereas Hamas has killed hundreds of Israelis and dozens of Americans in rocket attacks and suicide bombings; Whereas, since Israel's withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, Hamas and other terrorist groups have fired thousands of rockets at Israel; Whereas Hamas has entered into a unity governing arrangement with Fatah and the Palestinian Authority; Whereas the unity governing agreement implies Fatah's and the Palestinian Authority's support for Hamas' belligerent actions against Israel, potentially contributing to a false perception of legitimacy for Hamas' belligerent actions; Whereas, since June 2014, Hamas has fired nearly 300 rockets at Israel; Whereas Hamas' weapons arsenal includes approximately 12,000 rockets that vary in range; Whereas innocent Israeli civilians are indiscriminately targeted by Hamas rocket attacks; and Whereas 5,000,000 Israelis are currently living under the threat of rocket attacks from Gaza: Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the Senate-- (1) reaffirms its support for Israel's right to defend its citizens and ensure the survival of the State of Israel; (2) condemns the unprovoked rocket fire at Israel; (3) calls on Hamas to immediately cease all rocket and other attacks against Israel; and (4) calls on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to dissolve the unity governing arrangement with Hamas and condemn the attacks on Israel.