In another display of growing unrest over US President Barack Obama's overbearing pressure for Israel to meet Arab demands regarding Jewish settlements, a bipartisan group of 71 American senators sent a letter to Obama on Monday saying they would like to also see some Arab concessions.
The senators praised Obama for asking Arab leaders to make more of a show of supporting peace with Israel, but said Washington needs to start applying some pressure for positive concrete action on the Arab side.
In the letter, the senators noted that Israel has itself taken several positive concrete steps in recent months, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's public support for the eventual creation of a Palestinian state, the removal of Israeli checkpoints and Israeli assistance in bolstering the Palestinian economy.
The senators insisted that those actions need to be met by reciprocal Arab concessions, such as "ending the Arab League boycott of Israel, meeting openly with Israeli officials, establishing open trade relations with Israel, issuing visas to Israeli citizens, and inviting Israelis to participate in academic and professional conferences and sporting events."
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