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26 Christian Leaders Write to Congress
in Support of H.R. 2407

Download this letter

You can sign also as a supporter of HR 2407!
Click here and scroll down that page


18 November 2019

Dear Members of Congress:

As faith leaders who deeply care about the well-being of children in our country and in
communities abroad, we write to bring to light the ongoing trauma faced by Palestinian children
detained by the Israeli military.
We welcome the “Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living Under Israeli Military
Occupation Act” (H.R. 2407), legislation that prohibits any U.S. taxpayer funds from contributing
to the military detention, interrogation, abuse, or ill-treatment of children by any country,
including Israel.


As documented by numerous human rights organizations, since the year 2000 an estimated
10,000 Palestinian children between the ages of 12 and 17 have been detained, prosecuted and
incarcerated by the Israeli military in the occupied West Bank. Often dragged from their homes
in the middle of the night by armed soldiers, they suffer physical and emotional violence and
frequently face verbal abuse, humiliation and intimidation. These children are interrogated,
usually without family or lawyers present, and often sign confessions in Hebrew, a language
many do not understand.


Our faith commitments call us to pay particular attention to the rights of those most vulnerable,
including children. Wherever children are languishing in detention camps whether in our U.S.
context or in Israeli military prisons, we pray that leaders do their utmost to protect the humanity
and dignity of all and prevent the violation of children’s rights.


We applaud that H.R. 2407 also gives attention to healing Palestinian children who have
suffered from the physical and mental trauma of detention. H.R. 2407 authorizes the
appropriation of $19 million to fund non-governmental organizations that monitor human rights
in Israel/Palestine and provide physical and mental health services. We believe in the
importance of healing communities and victims of abuse so that one day Palestinians and
Israelis will be able to live in peace and security.


Congress has a responsibility to ensure that U.S. policy and foreign assistance reflects values
that prioritize concern for the most vulnerable, preserve and protect everyone’s dignity, and
conform with U.S. law. We thank you for your service and commitment as we work together for
justice and peace. Please know we are lifting you up in our prayers.


Sincerely,

Joyce Ajlouny
General Secretary
American Friends Service Committee

Rev. Eddy Alemán
General Secretary
Reformed Church in America


Rev. Julia Brown Karimu
President, Division of Overseas Ministries, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
Co-Executive, Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church
of Christ


J Ron Byler
Executive Director
Mennonite Central Committee U.S.


Rev. Dr. Mae Elise Cannon
Executive Director
Churches for Middle East Peace


Rev. Paula Clayton Dempsey
Director of Partnership Relations
Alliance of Baptists


Carole Collins
Director of Operations and Finance
Alliance of Baptists


The Most Rev. Michael B. Curry
Presiding Bishop and Primate
The Episcopal Church


Rev. Dr. John Dorhauer
General Minister and President
United Church of Christ


The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton
Presiding Bishop
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Rev. Dr. Susan Frederick-Gray
President
Unitarian Universalist Association


Susan Gunn
Director
Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns


Rev. Dr. Susan Henry-Crowe, General Secretary
General Board of Church and Society
The United Methodist Church


Rev. Teresa Hord Owens
General Minister and President
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada
Rev. Dr. Nathan Hosler


Director
Office of Peacebuilding and Policy
Church of the Brethren


The Most Reverend Metropolitan JOSEPH
Archbishop of New York and Metropolitan of All North America
Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America


Eli McCarthy
Director of Justice and Peace
Conference of Major Superiors of Men


Rev. John L. McCullough
President and CEO
Church World Service


Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson
Stated Clerk of the General Assembly
Presbyterian Church (USA)


Diane Randall
Executive Secretary
Friends Committee on National Legislation


Rev. Dr. Karen Georgia Thompson
Associate General Minister, Wider Church Ministries and Operations, United Church of Christ
Co-Executive, Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church
of Christ


Dr. Steven Timmermans
Executive Director
Christian Reformed Church in North America


Rev. Dr. Al Tizon
Affiliate Associate Professor of Missional and Global Leadership
North Park Theological Seminary


Nikki Toyama-Szeto
Executive Director
Evangelicals for Social Action/The Sider Center


Jim Winkler
President and General Secretary
National Council of Churches


Johnny Zokovitch
Executive Director
Pax Christi USA


You can sign also as a supporter of HR 2407!
Click here and scroll down that page

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