Recent Press Releases

Washington, DC —  Senator John Thune (R-SD) today issued the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 79, a measure he introduced expressing the sense of Congress that no U.S. assistance should be provided directly to the Palestinian Authority if a ruling majority party within the Palestinian Parliament maintains a position calling for the destruction of Israel. The resolution was agreed to by a vote of 418-1.

"The United States Congress has now made its position clear: We will not do business with a government that calls for the annihilation of Israel. Now the ball is in Hamas' court.

"Democracy is more than a single election—it means governing responsibly and peaceably. As the Palestinian Parliament begins to form its cabinet, Hamas leaders must consider the needs of the people they now represent. The question now becomes whether Hamas will choose to embrace violence and cripple their country's economy and security or whether they will govern responsibly and ensure peace and stability.

"Hamas must decide if they are ready to change course on their militant past, renounce violence, and recognize their neighbor Israel. Until then, our message is clear: America does not and will not support terrorism."

This resolution affirms the intent of the statement made by the Quartet, which is a group of representatives from the United States, European Union, the United Nations, and Russia that shapes international policy toward resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, that the new Palestinian government must be committed to nonviolence, recognition of Israel, the acceptance of prior agreements and a process seeking a negotiated peace with Israel.