Ocasio-Cortez spearheads letter vowing to condition US aid to Israel over annexation

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) speaks during a press conference with Rep. Andy Levin (D-MI) about their new bill called the EV Freedom Act on Capitol Hill on February 6, 2020 in Washington, DC. (photo: Samuel Corum / Getty Images)
A letter backed by four prominent progressives in Congress was immediately rejected by pro-Israel groups in Washington.

By Ali Harb  |  Middle East Eye  |  June 30, 2020

‘We cannot support an undemocratic system in which Israel would permanently rule over a Palestinian people denied self-determination or equal rights,’
— US House Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Pramila Jayapal and Betty McCollum

Four Democratic congresswomen have put forward a strong-worded letter against Israel’s plan to annex parts of the West Bank, calling for using a “combination of pressure and incentives” to prevent it, including imposing conditions on American military aid to Israel.

The letter, led by House member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and co-signed by Rashida Tlaib, Pramila Jayapal and Betty McCollum, was met with immediate rejection by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) on Monday, setting the stage for a confrontation between progressive Democrats and pro-Israel groups in Washington.

“Unilateral annexation in the West Bank would alienate US lawmakers and citizens. We cannot support an undemocratic system in which Israel would permanently rule over a Palestinian people denied self-determination or equal rights,” the letter, addressed to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, reads.

“Should the Israeli government move forward with the planned annexation with this administration’s acquiescence, we will work to ensure non-recognition as well as pursue conditions on the $3.8 billion in US military funding to Israel, including human rights conditions.”

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