U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) introduced a bill today that would limit funds authorized to be appropriated for U.S. participation in joint military exercises with Egypt if the Egyptian government abrogates, terminates, or withdraws from the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty.
"Israel is the United States' greatest ally and friend in the Middle East and is among its best allies in the entire world. Compliance with the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty is vital in ensuring a peaceful relationship between Israel and Egypt. Should Egypt decide not to meet its obligations under that treaty, the United States would need to seriously reevaluate its military relationship with Egypt, including its participation in joint military exercises," Sen. Toomey said.
Jewish community leaders in Pennsylvania thanked the senator for introducing this legislation.
"We appreciate Sen. Toomey's continued demonstration of his strong support for Israel and his appreciation of the critical importance to the region of maintaining the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty. This treaty is key to ensuring future peaceful relations between Egypt and Israel and to maintaining Israel's security. This bill emphasizes the importance the United States ascribes to this treaty and results in adverse consequences to Egypt should it choose to no longer abide by the treaty," said Bill Wanger, partner at Fox Rothschild and president of the Republican Jewish Coalition's Philadelphia chapter.
"Sen. Toomey has consistently demonstrated his commitment and strong support for Israel. The legislation he has introduced highlights the importance of the 1979 Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty to future peaceful relations between the two countries. It attaches a necessary safeguard to help ensure compliance with the treaty, one that has kept the peace between Israel and Egypt for more than three decades," said Mark Silverberg, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Northeastern Pennsylvania in Scranton.
"We appreciate Sen. Toomey's longstanding and staunch support for Israel. And we appreciate Senator Toomey's recognition of the centrality of the Israel-Egypt peace treaty to Israel's security and U.S. policy in the Middle East. We are grateful that Sen. Toomey is working to ensure that regardless of who's in power in Cairo, Egypt will live up to its commitments to Israel, the U.S. and the international community," said Steve and Liz DeFrain, Pennsylvania state directors of Christians United For Israel.