03.30.16

Senator Patrick Leahy Responds To Prime Minister Netanyahu About The Worldwide Application Of The ‘Leahy Law’

“The Prime Minister of Israel knows – and it should go without saying – that the United States does not provide weapons or other aid to Hamas or any other terrorist group, and that no nation more strongly condemns and works to eradicate terrorism worldwide than does the United States.  There are multiple laws prohibiting such aid to Hamas and other such groups, and one reason Israel is the largest recipient of U.S. military aid is to help defend against terrorist attacks.

“The congressional letter cites allegations of possible serious abuses, identified by respected international human rights organizations, by the military and police forces of Egypt and Israel.  Under the Leahy Law it is the responsibility of the State Department to evaluate the credibility of such allegations.  The Leahy Law, which has existed for nearly 20 years, applies uniformly, worldwide – no country is exempt – and it applies to specific military personnel and units, not to general security forces, when U.S. aid is involved.  It has led to the suspension of U.S. aid to military personnel and units found to have committed abuses in many countries when governments fail to punish those responsible, and only when those governments themselves have failed to act.  This is only fair to U.S. taxpayers, and it is necessary in upholding the rule of law that our country stands for.”

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A link to an article describing the Leahy Law and the letter Senator Leahy and ten Members of Congress sent to Secretary Kerry can be found here.

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