SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 54--EXPRESSING THE SENSE OF CONGRESS AND REAFFIRMING LONGSTANDING UNITED STATES POLICY IN SUPPORT OF A DIRECT BILATERALLY NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT OF THE ISRAELI...; Congressional Record Vol. 162, No. 147
(Senate - September 28, 2016)

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 SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION 54--EXPRESSING THE SENSE OF CONGRESS AND 
 REAFFIRMING LONGSTANDING UNITED STATES POLICY IN SUPPORT OF A DIRECT 
 BILATERALLY NEGOTIATED SETTLEMENT OF THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT 
AND OPPOSITION TO UNITED NATIONS SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTIONS IMPOSING 
                       A SOLUTION TO THE CONFLICT

  Mr. KIRK (for himself and Mr. Blumenthal) submitted the following 
concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign 
Relations:

                            S. Con. Res. 54

       Whereas the United States has long supported a negotiated 
     settlement leading to a sustainable two-state solution with 
     the democratic, Jewish state of Israel and a democratic 
     Palestinian state living side-by-side in peace and security;
       Whereas it is the long-standing policy of the United States 
     Government that a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-
     Palestinian conflict will only come through direct, bilateral 
     negotiations between the two parties;
       Whereas President Barack Obama reiterated this policy at 
     the United Nations General Assembly in 2011, stating, ``Peace 
     is hard work. Peace will not come through statements and 
     resolutions at the United Nations--if it were that easy, it 
     would have been accomplished by now. Ultimately, it is the 
     Israelis and the Palestinians who must live side by side. 
     Ultimately, it is the Israelis and the Palestinians--not us--
     who must reach agreement on the issues that divide them'';
       Whereas the Palestinian Authority has failed to end 
     incitement to hatred and violence through Palestinian 
     Authority-directed institutions against Israel and Israelis 
     and to end payments to prisoners and the families of those 
     who have engaged in terrorism or acts of violence against 
     Israelis or the State of Israel;
       Whereas the Palestinian Authority has continued to provide 
     payments to prisoners and the families of those who have 
     engaged in terrorism or acts of violence against Israelis or 
     the State of Israel, including reports of approximately 
     $300,000,000 in 2016;
       Whereas efforts to impose a solution or parameters for a 
     solution can make negotiations more difficult and can set 
     back the cause of peace;
       Whereas it is long-standing practice of the United States 
     Government to oppose and, if necessary, veto United Nations 
     Security Council resolutions dictating additional binding 
     parameters on the peace process;
       Whereas it is also the historic position of the United 
     States Government to oppose and veto, if necessary, one-sided 
     or anti-Israel resolutions at the United Nations Security 
     Council;
       Whereas, for this reason, the United States has vetoed 42 
     Israel-related resolutions in the United Nations Security 
     Council since 1972;
       Whereas the Palestinian Authority must engage in broad, 
     meaningful, and systemic reforms in order to ultimately 
     prepare its institutions and people for statehood and 
     peaceful coexistence with Israel; and
       Whereas unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state would 
     bypass negotiations and undermine incentives for the 
     Palestinian Authority to make the changes necessary that are 
     pre-requisites for peace: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives 
     concurring), that is it the sense of Congress that--
       (1) a durable and sustainable peace agreement between 
     Israel and the Palestinians will come only through direct 
     bilateral negotiations between the parties;
       (2) any widespread international recognition of a 
     unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood outside of 
     the context of a peace agreement with Israel would cause 
     severe harm to the peace process, and would likely trigger 
     the implementation of penalties under sections 7036 and 
     7041(j) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and 
     Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2016 (division K of 
     Public Law 114-113; 129 Stat. 2769, 2779);
       (3) efforts by outside bodies, including the United Nations 
     Security Council, to impose an agreement or parameters for an 
     agreement are likely to set back the cause of peace;
       (4) the United States Government should continue to oppose 
     and veto United Nations Security Council resolutions that 
     seek to impose solutions to final status issues, or are one-
     sided and anti-Israel; and
       (5) the United States Government should continue to support 
     and facilitate the resumption of negotiations without pre-
     conditions between Israelis and Palestinians toward a 
     sustainable peace agreement.

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