Israel Policy Forum welcomes and commends the letter led by Representatives Schakowsky, Deutch, Price, and Schneider, and signed by 191 Members of Congress that expresses concerns over unilateral Israeli West Bank annexation. Israel Policy Forum echoes the sentiments of the letter’s authors and signatories, all steadfast friends of Israel who support Israel’s security and a peaceful future for Israelis and Palestinians, and urges the Israeli government to take these concerns seriously.

The letter sent to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, Alternate Prime Minister and Defense Minister Gantz, and Foreign Minister Ashkenazi notes that unilateral annexation of West Bank territory poses an existential threat to a secure, Jewish, and democratic Israel. Such action will cause friction between Israel and its neighbors, create new sources of regional instability, and put unnecessary pressure on the U.S.-Israel relationship. Unilateral annexation also flies in the face of traditional bipartisan American policy in support of two states and contravenes two House resolutions passed last year.

The letter was signed by nearly every single member of leadership of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), and Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), including the chairs of all three of those caucuses, known collectively as the Congressional Tri-Caucus. The letter was also signed by a vast majority of Jewish Members, a majority of House Leadership, members of the State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Subcommittee, and a significant number of members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Leading up to and throughout this initiative, Israel Policy Forum’s efforts have been critical in engaging Members of Congress by bringing our policy, analysis, and research to aid them in making these crucial decisions. Israel Policy Forum continues to be heartened and encouraged by the scores of Members of Congress – including the top echelons of Congressional leadership – who have responded to over two years of Israel Policy Forum’s warnings about the dangers of unilateral annexation of West Bank territory through clear statements and impactful letters such as this one.

The Congress’s voice is crucial in understanding the political landscape in the United States. Israel Policy Forum looks forward to the return of bipartisan consensus in support of a viable two-state solution and in opposition to steps that would undermine the prospects of such an outcome, such as unilateral actions by Israelis and Palestinians, including annexation.