A bipartisan group of US senators has introduced legislation authorizing additional funding to the United States Security Coordinator in Jerusalem, which liaises between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
The bill is aimed at bolstering the post after the Pentagon moved to downgrade its rank last year to compensate for congressionally mandated budget cuts. The downgrade was prevented following a lobbying campaign led by the center-left Israel Policy Forum, which is backing the new legislation submitted by Senators Jon Ossoff (Democrat-Georgia), Todd Young (Republican-Indiana), James Lankford (Republican-Oklahoma) and Cory Booker (Democrat-New Jersey).
“The US Security Coordinator in Jerusalem plays a crucial role in protecting American interests and deescalating conflict in Israel and Palestinian territories,” says Ossoff in a statement. “With tensions rising in this area, these efforts are essential. That’s why I’m leading this bipartisan legislation to support US National Security and peace in the Middle East.”
“Strengthening this key diplomatic role is critical to the US-Israel relationship and our shared national security interests,” says Young. “Our bipartisan bill will promote stability in the Middle East and ensure robust American engagement in the region.”
If passed, the Middle East Security Coordination Act would be the first bipartisan bill on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the 2020 Middle East Partnership for Peace Act, which earmarked $250 million over at least five years to projects that support peacebuilding and Palestinian economic development.