Tag: Congress

Congress Takes Steps to Increase Security Funding for Nonprofits

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Two moves in Congress would substantially increase funding for security for nonprofits, a program that has helped harden Jewish institutions against attack.

The U.S. House of Representatives on Monday voted to authorize $75 million in annual funding for the program over the next four years, a raise from the $60 million appropriation in the current year.

Authorizing funds, as opposed to just appropriating them, makes a program a priority for future appropriations, although it does not guarantee funding. Appropriators down the line may ignore past authorizations.

On the other hand, an amount set in…

Most of Congress Urges Trump: Safeguard Israel’s Interests with Syrian Civil War Ending

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Nearly 400 members of Congress signed a bipartisan letter to President Donald Trump calling on him to safeguard Israel’s interests with Syria’s civil war coming to an end.

The letter sent Monday from members of the House of Representatives and the Senate urged Trump to ensure that Israel has the support and materiel to maintain its qualitative military edge in the region. It also wants economic and diplomatic pressure on Russia and Iran to retreat from their support for the Assad regime, and intensifying sanctions on Hezbollah, the Lebanese terrorist militia that is Iran’s ally.

“With the region…

Anti-Zionist Imam Delivers Opening Prayers In the U.S. House of Representatives

Omar Suleiman giving an opening prayer for a session of the House of Representatives, May 9, 2019. (Screenshot from YouTube)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — An imam who has wished for the end of Zionism, called for a third Intifada and likened Israel to Nazi-era Germany delivered the opening prayer for a session of the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday.

Omar Suleiman, the founder and president of the Dallas-based Yaqeen Institute, an organization that describes itself as a resource about Islam, referred to recent attacks on houses of worship…

Over 1,000 religious leaders urge Mike Pompeo to name anti-Semitism monitor

More than a thousand lay and clergy leaders across a range of faiths signed a petition urging Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to name an anti-Semitism monitor.

“Around the world, violent and even lethal attacks have been made on Jews and Jewish institutions; physical harassment of Jews who wear a kippah in public is all too common,” says the petition addressed to Pompeo, organized by the American Jewish Committee and released Tuesday to media.

There has been no anti-Semitism monitor since President Donald Trump assumed office in January 2017, and Rex Tillerson, Pompeo’s predecessor, emptied the Office to Monitor and…

Some Jewish artifacts from Libya can still be brought into US, despite new import restrictions

(JTA) — Though the United States recently barred Libyan artifacts from entering the country, certain Jewish artifacts are exempt from the agreement, the State Department clarified.

Last month, the United States agreed to a request from Libya to bar certain Libyan artifacts from entering the country. Intended to prevent pillaging of artifacts and their sale on the black market, the agreement applied to artifacts dated 1911 and earlier. The original request by Libya, submitted last year, asked for Jewish artifacts to be included.

Activists decried the agreement, saying it gave ownership to Libya over objects, such as antique Torah scrolls, tombstones and…