Democratic Party's platform opposes sovereignty

Democratic Party releases draft 2020 platform which includes language opposing sovereignty and supporting rights of Palestinian Arabs.

Elad Benari ,

Democratic presidential hopefuls debate (archive)
Democratic presidential hopefuls debate (archive)

The Democratic Party on Wednesday released its draft 2020 platform which includes language that opposes an Israeli move to apply sovereignty over Judea and Samaria and supports the rights of Palestinian Arabs.

“Democrats believe a strong, secure, and democratic Israel is vital to the interests of the United States. Our commitment to Israel’s security, its qualitative military edge, its right to defend itself, and the 2016 Memorandum of Understanding is ironclad,” the draft reads.

It goes on to say that “Democrats recognize the worth of every Israeli and every Palestinian. That’s why we will work to help bring to an end a conflict that has brought so much pain to so many. We support a negotiated two-state solution that ensures Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state with recognized borders and upholds the right of Palestinians to live in freedom and security in a viable state of their own.

The draft document then states, “Democrats oppose any unilateral steps by either side—including annexation—that undermine prospects for two states. Democrats will continue to stand against incitement and terror. We oppose settlement expansion. We believe that while Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations, it should remain the capital of Israel, an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.”

It further states that “Democrats will restore U.S.-Palestinian diplomatic ties and critical assistance to the Palestinian people in the West Bank and Gaza, consistent with U.S. law. We oppose any effort to unfairly single out and delegitimize Israel, including at the United Nations or through the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement, while protecting the Constitutional right of our citizens to free speech.”

Democrats have been vocal in their opposition to Israel’s plan to apply sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria, a move which could have been carried out on July 1, in accordance with the coalition agreement signed between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz.

Recently, four House Democrats, including Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib, wrote to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo calling on the United States to cut assistance to Israel should it proceed to apply sovereignty over Judea and Samaria.

Previously, a group of Democratic Senators, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), issued a statement in which they expressed their opposition to the sovereignty move.

The senators noted that direct negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians are “the only path for a durable peace.” They warned that annexation “could undermine regional stability and broader US national security interests in the region.”

Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), a prominent Democrat, recently proposed legislation that would ban US assistance to Israel from being used to apply sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria.