Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact Information: Hussein Ibish
November 29, 2007 - 12:00am

Washington, D.C., November 30 –– The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) co-sponsored yesterday a standing-room only Capitol Hill Briefing entitled ‘Digesting Annapolis: What Happened, What It Means, and What Happens Next?’ In addition to ATFP, the other co-sponsoring organizations were Americans for Peace Now (APN), Brit Tzedek v’Shalom, the Israel Policy Forum, the Arab American Institute, Churches for Middle East Peace, and the Foundation for Middle East Peace. Over 200 diplomats, Congressional staff, journalists, and members of the general public attended.

The briefing featured ATFP Advocacy Director and former Palestinian negotiator Ghaith al Omari, New America senior fellow and former Israel negotiator Daniel Levy, acting vice president of the U.S. Institute of Peace’s Center for Conflict Analysis and Prevention Scott Lasensky, longtime Israeli journalist and current APN spokesman Ori Nir, and PLO negotiations affairs department advisor Greg Khalil. The panel was moderated by former senior U.S. State Department official and current President of the Foundation for Middle East Peace Ambassador Phil Wilcox.

Today’s collaboration by the sponsoring organizations is part of an important and increasingly successful partnership on joint projects of concern to all the organizations’ constituencies, namely securing constructive U.S. engagement in achieving Israeli-Palestinian peace. Previous partnership successes include recently providing input on and mobilizing support for a letter signed by Representatives Gary Ackerman (D-NY) and Charles Boustany (R-LA) to Secretary Rice, co-signed by135 members of Congress, supporting the Annapolis meeting and urging greater U.S. engagement in upcoming Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts. In 2006 the same coalition coordinated efforts to mobilize cosponsors for S. Res. 321, a resolution introduced by Senators Feinstein (D-CA) and Lugar (R-IN) calling for increased U.S. engagement in Middle East peacemaking and for the appointment of a Mideast envoy. In addition, the coalition was able to successfully oppose damaging provisions in the House of Representatives version of the 2006 Palestinian Anti- Terrorism Act (HR 4681), resulting in a greatly improved Senate version of the bill that was passed into law.

Commenting on today’s briefing ATFP president Dr. Ziad Asali said: 'ATFP is proud to be part of this budding national partnership for achieving Israeli-Palestinian peace. We have long called for a national coalition for a two-state solution that cuts across ethnic and religious lines.’






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