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    US Senators Introduce Bill Authorizing Military Assistance to Israel

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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US Senator Marco Rubio said in a statement on Wednesday that he and Senator Chris Coons introduced a bill authorizing military aid for Israel over the next ten years as per the new memorandum of understanding signed by Washington and Tel Aviv in 2016.

    "With Israel facing evolving threats from Iran, Syria's Assad regime, Hezbollah, Hamas and other malign actors, this bipartisan legislation will enable the United States to further strengthen our critical strategic alliance with Israel," Rubio said in the statement.

    The measure dubbed United States-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2018 also extends the loan guarantee authority and the war reserves stockpile authority for Israel for a five-year period.

    Rubio explained in the release that the legislation is consistent with US national security interests to ensure Israel's safety.

    The Coons-Rubio bill accompanies a mirror bill introduced earlier in the US House of Representatives.

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    The bill was introduced, following the US confident pro-Israeli policy in the Middle East. In December, US President Donald Trump announced his decision to support Israeli bid for the disputed city of Jerusalem and to recognize it as Israel's capital, subsequently moving there the US Embassy, currently located in Tel Aviv. The step has prompted criticism from a number of states, first and foremost those in the Middle East and Palestine, and triggered a wave of protests in the region.

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    For decades, Israel has been in conflict with the Palestinians, who have been seeking diplomatic recognition for their independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which is partially occupied by Israel, and the Gaza Strip.

    Tags:
    bill, foreign military aid, National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria, Israel, United States
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