Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, met with US Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) and US Rep. Eliot L. Engel (D-NY) and said:
"I'm delighted to see two old friends, Congressman Engel and Congressman Royce. You have been wonderful supporters of Israel. It's a reflection of the bipartisan support that Israel enjoys in the United States from both sides of the aisle, from every administration, from every president. It's something that we deeply appreciate: The help for Iron Dome and the support for Israel throughout, our right to defend ourselves against terrorists who break every norm and every rule and who endanger all of us. We're fighting not just Israel's war, but I think a common battle against enemies of mankind – Hamas, Hezbollah, al-Qaeda, ISIS, supported many of them by regimes that propel terrorism to the front, like Iran.
I think this is a challenge to all civilized nations. Israel and the United States stand together and your visit reflects that. I think that we have to understand that if we don't face down these forces, they will advance and they will advance not only in the Middle East, but beyond to Europe, to the United States, to every part of the globe.
So it heartens the people of Israel to have such strong support from the people, the government and the representatives of the United States of America. It's an iron shield for Israel and against human shields that exact horrible, horrible costs from the people of Gaza. So I thank you for both expressions of support."
US Rep. Royce replied:
"Well, thank you Prime Minister. We did want to be here during this time of challenge. Of course Israel's history is one of meeting challenges and you've met this challenge. You'll meet the next one, but we in the United States in a bipartisan way certainly agree with that assessment and as I say, we're here not just to help you meet this challenge, but to have a discussion because when we return to the Foreign Affairs Committee, we're going to have a dialogue about ISIS and about the other threats to this region, and certainly a continued dialogue about Iran, which has frankly helped empower terror in so many ways. And it's our hope that we come up with a concerted, focused plan on what we do about ISIS and how we stop the momentum of ISIS sooner rather than later."
US Rep. Engel added:
"And Mr. Prime Minister, let me say that, as you know, Ed Royce and I are from both parties. We're the leaders on the Foreign Affairs Committee from both parties and there is not a millimeter of difference between us and the Congress on both sides of the aisle when it comes to support for Israel and that the bonds between the United States and Israel are strong, support is bipartisan and that's the way it should be. And as two quick examples of that: In the closing days of the session in Washington, the Congress voted 422 to 8 to replenish funds for the Iron Dome and we also had a resolution which was passed unanimously by voice vote condemning Hamas for using its people as human shields. So this is something, the strong friendship and bond between the United States and Israel is unbreakable and always shall be."
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