Support is growing in Congress for legislation that would penalize the use of economic measures to oppose Israeli settlements and policies towards Palestinians that are unjust and discriminatory.
- Legitimize Israeli settlements in U.S. policy by treating settlements as part of Israel, effectively eliminating U.S. recognition of the Green Line. Settlements are Jewish-only residential areas built on Palestinian land in the West Bank.
- Criminalize constitutionally protected boycotts and free speech. This bill renders it illegal for U.S. companies to choose to boycott businesses located in illegal Israeli settlements based on calls by human rights bodies of the United Nations.
The Christian community in the Middle East has been an enduring witness to the gospel for more than 2,000 years. However, the witness of the Church in the cradle of our faith is now in danger as Christians are suffering under occupation, many of them choosing to flee the increasing oppression and violence.
We have the opportunity to stand in active solidarity with Christian communities in the Middle East as they face the challenge of maintaining a faithful Christian presence in increasingly volatile environments through nonviolent actions like boycott and divestment, but this bill makes it more challenging for individuals, businesses and organizations to do so.
Join our ecumenical partners in standing with our Christian brothers and sisters in Israel and the Palestinian territories by urging Congress to Oppose the Israel Anti-Boycott Act.
Image credit: Flickr user Kyle Taylor