RELEASE: Gottheimer-Backed Bipartisan Legislation to Create a Special Envoy for the Abraham Accords Passes House

Key Step for Israeli-Arab Normalization

Jun 13, 2023
Press

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, June 13, 2023, the U.S. House of Representatives passed bipartisan legislation backed by U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) — the Special Envoy for the Abraham Accords Act — which requires the State Department to establish an ambassador-level Special Envoy position for the Abraham Accords. Working as a primary advisor, the Special Envoy would be responsible for coordinating on behalf of the U.S. government with regional ambassadors, nongovernmental organizations, and other stakeholders to strengthen and expand Israeli-Arab normalization.

The Special Envoy will be appointed by the President, confirmed by the Senate, and report directly to the Secretary of State. The Envoy would be required to possess high-level diplomatic experience and deep knowledge about the Jewish and Islamic worlds, regional security, and economics. This individual could come from within the State Department. 

“This bipartisan legislation is a key step for Israeli-Arab normalization and will help reaffirm the ultimate goal of bringing peace and stability to Israel and the Middle East. The historic Abraham Accords have opened the doors to increased Arab-Israeli cooperation and provide a way forward on Israeli-Palestinian peace,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5), a member of the bipartisan Abraham Accords Caucus. “We are working to strengthen and expand the Abraham Accords, support Israel’s existing partnerships, and increase regional cooperation to counter shared threats. We must remember that Israel’s national security is key to America’s national security, and to our fight against terror, including against Hamas, Hezbollah, and ISIS. Broadening Israel’s relationships with Arab countries and beyond makes the region and America safer.” 

The legislation passed in a 413-13 vote.

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