Wexton Statement on Status of the Conflict Between Israel and Hamas
Washington, December 5, 2023
Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton (D-VA) issued the following statement expressing support for a resumption of the cessation of fighting in the conflict between Hamas and Israel in order to protect the lives and well-being of innocent civilians and remaining hostages.
“Over the past two months, I’ve been horrified to see the mass casualties, broken families, and brutality inflicted on innocent people including children during the conflict between Israel and Hamas. I have unequivocally condemned the horrific terrorist attack that Hamas launched on Israel on October 7th, and I have continuously pressed for the safe release of all hostages. I have also been vocal in calling for all possible measures to be taken in order to protect innocent lives amidst this conflict and the urgent need to deliver lifesaving aid to those in Gaza.
“I’ve taken the time to meet with a number of constituent groups who have shared with me their deep concerns and perspectives on this issue. I’m proud to represent a district that is home to communities that celebrate their rich culture, ethnic, and faith diversity, which makes us stronger. I understand the complex and intense feelings that this kind of appalling violence can evoke and the challenging realities of the situation. The Palestinian people deserve the right to their own state, but Hamas is a terrorist organization that seeks out war and aims for the destruction of Israel; Israel has a right to defend itself, yet there is never justification for total war that leaves tens of thousands of innocent civilians, including children, dead, injured, and displaced.
“I was relieved to see a temporary cessation of fighting, which allowed for the safe release of hostages including Americans and for the delivery of humanitarian assistance. These developments were encouraging and represented steps in the right direction. I believe we must continue down this path in order to allow for the protection of innocent lives, especially the children who have been caught in the crossfire. I therefore urge Hamas and Israel, through the Qataris and additional appropriate intermediaries, to engage in steps to negotiate and implement a lasting mutual ceasefire to protect the peace and security of innocent Palestinian civilians and the people of Israel. To allow the parties and their intermediaries time to achieve these ends, the pause in fighting should resume immediately.
“As we continue to closely follow the developments in this devastating conflict, I am and will remain committed to protecting American security first and foremost, standing up against bigotry targeting our Jewish and Arab and Muslim neighbors, and advocating for the safety and well-being of innocent lives.”