A Quaker Lobby in the Public Interest
When crises break out in the Middle East, the U.S. too often turns to violence first. FCNL lobbies for nonviolent engagement in the Middle East to prevent, de-escalate and resolve longstanding conflicts. Political grievances contribute to instability and violence, so lasting peace in the region will require engagement with all stakeholders.
What's New on the Middle East
Today, 20 members of Congress, led by Representative Betty McCollum (MN), sent a letter to President Obama calling for the appointment of a
Special Envoy for Palestinian Youth in response to reports of widespread mistreatment of Palestinian minors in Israeli military detention. FCNL applauds Rep. McCollum and her 19 colleagues for taking what is arguably the strongest showing for Palestinian human rights from Congress.
Dear Colleague letter from Rep. John Conyers on Cluster Munitions. Cluster bombs are munitions that open up mid-air to release tens or hundreds of bomblets which scatter over an area equivalent to several football fields, and pose an immediate threat to civilians as they disperse over a wide area and leave explosive remnants that become de facto landmines. Cluster munitions are prohibited by a 2008 treaty signed by 119 countries, though not Saudi Arabia or the US.
FCNL joined Members of Congress, advocates, and faith leaders at a press conference on Capitol Hill for the introduction of H.R. 5207, the Freedom of Religion Act of 2016
We support the ongoing negotiations between the United States, its negotiating partners and Iran to finalize an agreement that would guard against a nuclear-armed Iran, another US war in the Middle East and begin lifting sanctions that had a devastating impact on Iranian civilians. Securing a negotiated settlement to the dispute over Iran’s nuclear program would strengthen the global non-proliferation regime and has the potential to open the door to U.S.-Iran engagement on de-escalating the conflict in Syria and other regional matters.
We work to highlight the voices of Palestinians and Israelis working for nonviolent solutions to the conflict and supporting inclusive, diplomatic efforts to secure a just peace for both peoples. FCNL opposes U.S. military aid to Israel and supports humanitarian and development aid to the region. We call on the Obama administration and Congress to urge Israel to immediately lift the blockade on Gaza, in accordance with the August 2014 ceasefire agreement.
We call for the U.S. to take steps to de-escalate the violence in Iraq and Syria. Military responses will only increase the violence, so the U.S. should act nonviolently and stop bombing and military campaigns. Political solutions must engage all stakeholders.
FCNL Statement of Legislative Policy
"We support active non-violent responses to prevent or transform violent conflict at all levels.
The cycles of violence perpetuated by acts of terror and the armed overthrow of governments serve as warning against the use of force, while the examples of nonviolent movements for change provide concrete alternatives.”