Tag: Trump Administration

The Trump administration says it wants to shut down the PLO mission. Now what?

WASHINGTON (JTA) — In 1987, Congress passed legislation that declared there would never be an office of the Palestine Liberation Organization on U.S. soil. President Ronald Reagan agreed and signed the law.

Seven years later the law was still on the books. But that year the PLO opened an office in Washington — with the blessing of Congress and President Bill Clinton.

Since then, a PLO office has remained in the U.S. capital, navigating a persistent anomaly: The 1987 law officially bans the existence of a PLO office, but it remains open as long as the Palestinians…

New Jewish Democratic group launched in reaction to Trump

(JTA) — Jewish and Democratic leaders, including dozens of members of Congress, attended the launch of a group designed to connect the Democratic Party and the Jewish community.

The Jewish Democratic Council of America was launched Wednesday night at an event on Capitol Hill.

“This new organization will provide a strong voice for Jewish Democrats and fill a serious recent void in the national political discussion,” the group said in a statement on its website in August when it announced its formation plans. “It will unify and mobilize Jewish Democrats with other like-minded groups supporting mutually beneficial and agreed upon…

Nikki Haley: Unless UN rights council reforms, US is out

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The United States is ready to pull out of the U.N. Human Rights Council unless it institutes reforms, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told an Israeli-American audience.

“The Human Rights Council will either adopt these reforms, or the United States will leave,” Haley said Saturday to applause at the annual Washington conference of the Israeli American Council.

Haley said U.S. proposed reforms include removing “Item 7,” which requires a report on Israeli actions in the West Bank each time the panel convenes. She said the United States also wanted structural changes…

Pence’s Middle East Christians tour to include Israel stop

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Vice President Mike Pence will include Israel on a tour of the Middle East to check on the status of the region’s Christians.

“This president, you can know with confidence that America condemns persecution of any faith in any place at any time, and we will stand against it with all of the might of this great nation,” Pence said Wednesday in Washington, D.C., at a conference of In Defense of Christians, a group that advocates for the protection of Christians in the Middle East.

“In fact, President Trump has directed me to go…

Israel advances plans for more West Bank housing, roiling EU

JERUSALEM (JTA) — An Israeli Defense Ministry committee advanced plans for more than 1,300 housing units in West Bank settlements, which the European Union called “detrimental” to efforts toward peace talks.

The 1,323 homes and apartments approved Wednesday by the Civil Administration’s High Planning Subcommittee, which oversees construction activity in the West Bank, are in various stages of development. On Tuesday, the panel gave the OK for 1,292 housing units there.

Also this week, the subcommittee reportedly approved the construction of an apartment complex in a Jewish neighborhood of mostly Palestinian Hebron.

The European Union said it has requested…