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Obama pressed by Democratic senators Photo: AP
Obama pressed by Democratic senators Photo: AP

Democrat senators to Obama: Cut PA aid

Dozens of senators urge president to end aid to Palestinians if Hamas joins government

Yitzhak Benhorin
Published: 05.07.11, 23:03 / Israel News

WASHINGTONObama pressured by own party members: Following the recent Hamas-Fatah unity deal, 29 Democratic party senators sent a letter to President Barack Obama Friday, urging him to end American aid to the Palestinian Authority should Hamas join the PA government.


Now, along with Republican party senators endorsing the move, there is a clear majority in support of cutting the massive aid offered by the Administration to the Palestinians.


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The letter, initiated by Senators Robert Menendez from New Jersey and Bob Casey from Pennsylvania, has been signed by senior Senators, including Carl Levin, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, and Daniel Inouye, who heads the Senate's Appropriations Committee.


In their letter to President Obama, the Democrat senators write that "the decision of Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas to form a unity government with Hamas – a designated terrorist group – threatens to derail the Middle East peace effort."


The US Administration has earmarked $550 million to the PA for 2011.


In their letter, the senators also remind Obama that Hamas condemned the recent killing of arch-terrorist Osama bin Laden and note that "this is emblematic of Hamas' policy."


The United States should stand by its refusal to work with any Palestinian government that includes Hamas," the letter says.



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