Now the US Congress has decided to take that fact of history and address it, with a resolution calling for the recognition of these Jewish refugees when discussing peace agreements.
“While the Palestinian claim of a “right of return” for its refugees has long been an issue – and stumbling block – in final-status talks, the resolution seeks to have the suffering of Jewish refugees taken into account as well.
Backers described it as the first congressional measure to recognize these refugees, and argued that it shouldn’t hinder the peace process, but rather ground it more firmly in the historical reality experienced by two peoples long at odds.
“This is not an impediment,” said Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. He argued that raising the profile of Jewish refugees would create a stronger and more credible foundation for talks.