Tuesday, March 16, 2010
American Jewish Committee 's letter to the Senate of USA
March 10, 2010
Dear Senator :
The American Jewish Committee, an organization that advances inter-religious and inter-ethnic understanding and is dedicated to the success of moderation and pluralism in the Arab and Muslim world, urges your endorsement of a letter circulated by Senators Feinstein and Bond supporting U.S. leadership to resolve the longstanding dispute over the Western Sahara, in the interest of easing regional tensions and increasing cooperation against terrorism.
Directed to Secretary Clinton, the Feinstein-Bond letter recognizes the history of bipartisan U.S. support, across three administrations, for a resolution of the Western Sahara issue. In April 2007, Morocco put forward a proposal that would offer the disputed territory – roughly the size of Colorado and with a population of some 400,000 – broad local autonomy under Moroccan sovereignty. Ongoing negotiations under United Nations auspices between Morocco and the Algerian-backed Polisario Front have yet to yield results; firm U.S. leadership to assure international support for a just and practical negotiated resolution would advance regional stability and security.
Cognizant of the historic links between – and the broad common interests of – the United States and Morocco, and as an institutional partner of the Moroccan Jewish community, the American Jewish Committee strongly supports efforts by our Government and the Kingdom to enhance cooperation in many spheres, from the struggle against terrorism and extremism, to expanded economic opportunity in the Maghreb, cultural and educational exchange, and political reform. It was our faith in this vital relationship that underlay AJC’s support for the U.S.-Morocco Free Trade Agreement of 2004, and is the foundation of our ongoing dialogue with Moroccan officials and civil society on pressing issues of regional peace, security and human rights.
AJC views reinforced U.S. advocacy of Morocco’s autonomy proposal for Western Sahara as critical to the further enhancement of ties between our nation and the Kingdom, the continued advance of political and economic progress in Morocco, and effective pursuit of cooperative strategies to counter regional instability and international terrorism. We urge your signature on the Feinstein-Bond letter to Secretary Clinton.
With appreciation for your consideration of AJC’s views on this matter, I remain,
Jason F. Isaacson