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house Bill H.R. 5734

Should Palestinian Refugees be Offered Citizenship in Arab Countries?

Argument in favor

This could be the best possible scenario for Palestinian refugees. Increasing Israel's sovereignty would weaken terrorist group, Hamas. A more secure Israel could also facilitate the creation of a Palestinian state.

John's Opinion
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04/11/2016
YES! Palestine and its residents never did anything wrong and deserve their lives back, free from Israel's oppression against them. Why are the Palestinians being denied citizenship anyway? This is/can be the first step to recreating the country of Palestine so it can return to its former glory!
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Malek 's Opinion
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02/20/2015
it makes the relation ship between arab countries stronger,
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Argument opposed

We are essentially telling Israel how to solve one of the longest conflicts in human history, which seems unrealistic. There’s also no guarantee that the neighboring Arab countries would support this plan.

Fady's Opinion
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05/15/2015
PALESTINIANS NEED TO BE GRANTED PERMISSION TO RETURN TO THEIR HOMES IF ISRAEL WILL NOT AGREE TO SUCH A THING THEN THEY SHOULD AT LEADT GRANT THEM CITIZENSHIPS AND A RETURN WITH SOME RIGHTS
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Cecilia's Opinion
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05/30/2015
This is not our issue and we should butt out.
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What is House Bill H.R. 5734?

This bill would require the Secretary of State to call for Israel to increase the standard of living in Judea, Samaria, and Gaza by extending sovereignty over them(i.e. offering those places the authority to govern themselves)


Palestinian Arabs living in those areas would then be granted citizenship in the countries that governed those areas from 1949 to 1967 and have a right of return to those countries. "Right of return" in this context is the assertion that Palestinian refugees (including first-generation refugees and their progeny) can go back to Israeli and the Palestinian territories, and claim property that they themselves or their antecedents left (by force or other circumstance) behind.


No funds may be appropriated by Congress to be obligated or expended to provide any U.S. assistance, loan guarantee, or debt relief to the Palestinian Authority (PA) as long as any part of the PA unity government refuses to allow that right of return.


The Secretary of State shall ensure that refugees are allowed to return to their host countries in accordance with United Nations High Commission for Refugees regulations.


All U.S. assistance, loan guarantee, and debt relief that currently goes to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) shall instead be used to assist those who exercise their right of return.

Impact

Palestinian-Arab refugees; the governments of Israel, Palestine, and neighboring countries (especially Jordan and Egypt); Congress, the UN, the Secretary of State.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 5734

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-Depth:

The issue of Palestinian refugees has been a thorn of contention in the Arab-Israeli conflict ever since the state of Israel was founded in 1948. As a result of a coalition of Arab nations surrounding Israel attacking the new state that year, around 750,000 Palestinians had to flee the region during the war, while between 800,000 and 1 million Jews were forced out of nearby Arab countries.


Currently, about 1.5 million of the 5 million Palestinian refugees live in Gaza, the West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. Israel had withdrawn unilaterally from the Gaza Strip in 2005, but that allowed the terrorist group Hamas to take control of Gaza, and enter into a unity government with Fatah in the Palestinian Authority.


During the recent Israeli operations in Gaza aimed at eliminating Hamas’ rocket arsenal, it was revealed that Hamas had stored weapons at UNRWA schools and hospitals. According to estimates, in 2014 Hamas launched over 4000 rockets into Israel.  


The Israeli-Palestinian peace process has stalled recently, with debate over borders, land swaps, and the status of refugees being the primary points of contention. The U.S. has historically played a key role in the peace process, and its involvement is seen as crucial if an agreement is to be reached. This bill would at a minimum express the opinion of the U.S. on a critical aspect of the process.


Media:

Sponsoring Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) Statement on Terror Attacks in Israel

Israel National News

The Matzav Network


(Photo Credit: "Refugee children from Syria at a clinic in Ramtha, northern Jordan (9613477263)" by DFID - UK Department for International Development - Refugee children from Syria at a clinic in Ramtha, northern JordanUploaded by russavia. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

AKA

Right of Return Act

Official Title

To achieve a lasting peace in the Middle East and improve the economic situation for its people.

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The senate has not voted
  • The house has not voted
      house Committees
      Committee on Foreign Affairs
    IntroducedNovember 18th, 2014