July 26, 2001
The United States Congress approved a bill on Wednesday that would limit
assistance to the Palestinian Authority if it supports and encourages
The Foreign Assistance Act for the 2002 fiscal year, which passed
by a large majority, also compels the president to present a report to
Congress concerning the PA’s attempts to control terrorism and its
compliance with commitments to prevent terror attacks, as stipulated by the
Oslo Accords and other agreements it has signed with Israel.
If the president concludes that the PA has not met its commitments, he must
one of three options: withdrawing the presidential waiver that enabled the
establishment of the Palestinian Authority’s current diplomatic
representation in the United States; designating the PLO, or one or more of
its constituent groups, such as Fatah or Tanzim, or various groups operating
as arms of the Palestinian Authority, such as Force 17, as a “foreign
terrorist organization”; withholding United States aid, except humanitarian
assistance, from the West Bank and Gaza.
Congress also passed a clause which calls for the withholding of monetary
assistance to the International Red Cross as long as it continues to
discriminate against Israel’s Magen David Adom by refusing to accept Magen
David Adom into its umbrella organization.
US closer to posting rewards for capture of Palestinian terrorists
By Melissa Radler, Jerusalem Post, August 10
NEW YORK – The State Department is one step closer to publicizing the rewards
it offers for the capture of Palestinian terrorists suspected of having killed or
wounded American citizens in Israel, the West Bank, or Gaza.
The department is “examining how best to add Palestinian terrorists into the
program in a way which would be most effective in bringing the perpetrators to
justice,” wrote Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs Paul Kelly in an
August 2 letter to Rep. Ben Gilman (R-N.Y.), chairman of the House
subcommittee on Middle East and South Asia.
Kelly said the department currently offers rewards for the capture of Palestinian
terrorists, but does not publicize this on its Rewards for Justice Web site.
Kelley said that the department is reconsidering publicizing rewards due to
suggestions by Gilman, members of Congress who introduced legislation on the
issue in May, and the families of victims of terror.
“Due to changes on the ground, we now favor these suggestions,” wrote Kelly.
“This decision, while not yet implemented, is a tremendous step forward
toward bringing justice to the many Americans who have been killed by
Palestinians,” said Gilman.
The failure to publicize rewards, he said, “raised the unfortunate
suspicion that the American government somehow was permitting political
motives to interfere with the pursuit of justice.”
Sen. Gordon Smith (R-Oregon) introduced legislation to publicize such rewards
this week. The legislation is similar to Congress’s Koby Mandell Act of 2001,
which was named after 13-year old who was found bludgeoned to death in a
cave near Tekoa in May.
In June, 26 members of Congress wrote a letter to Secretary of State
Colin Powell urging him to publicize rewards.
Morton Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America, praised the
policy change. “We must continue fighting for this issue until rewards are
actually and finally offered,” said Klein.
Eighteen US citizens have been killed in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza
since the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993.