Members of Congress from Florida, including Reps. Cory Mills, Jared Moskowitz, María Elvira Salazar, and Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick, are among those who have signed a letter addressed to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, advocating for the Biden Administration to integrate the Abraham Accords into the broader U.S. strategy in Africa.
The Abraham Accords, established in 2020, ushered in a new era of diplomacy and cooperation between Israel and various Arab nations. The signatories of this recent letter hail the Accords for facilitating unprecedented trade, cultural exchange, defense cooperation, and increasing mutual understanding among new partners in the Middle East and North Africa region.
Rep. John James stands at the forefront of this initiative, which enjoys the backing of influential groups like the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC), and the Jewish Institute for National Security of America (JINSA). JINSA praised the bipartisan group, tweeting that “the opportunities to broaden Abraham Accords membership extend beyond the Middle East.
The opportunities to broaden Abraham Accords membership extend beyond the Middle East. Kudos to @JohnJamesMI and this bipartisan group of congressmen for encouraging the administration to be more proactive in its outreach on normalization.https://t.co/JSPVFZVm37
— JINSA (@jinsadc) June 2, 2023
Collectively, they are calling on the Biden administration to leverage the proven success of the Abraham Accords to enhance U.S. involvement in Africa. They advocate that the Accords could be effectively utilized as a dynamic instrument for promoting the U.S.’s long-term goals in the region, pertaining to regional stability, economic prosperity, and strategic alliances.
The appeal comes in the wake of the first-ever Israel-Arab-Africa Summit held in April 2023. The Summit convened 30 representatives from Arab and African countries, along with Israeli delegates, to address the region’s challenges. Notably, it led to a memorandum of understanding between the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and Ethiopia’s Institute of Foreign Affairs. The agreement aimed at strengthening cooperation on national security, agricultural technologies, and food and water security.
Highlighting these achievements, the signatories state that the Accords not only laid the foundation for peace in the Middle East but have already formed tangible partnerships that foster travel, cultural exchanges, trade, education, scientific and medical innovation, cybersecurity cooperation, and regional security. These accomplishments, they argue, demonstrate the capacity of the Accords to build multilateral partnerships and promote cooperation among nations.
As preparations are underway for a potential Negev Forum Summit, the group calls upon the State Department to extend invitations to African leaders and dignitaries. They hope to present the Accords as a framework for addressing some of the continent’s most pressing challenges, including slave labor, food security, energy, education, and healthcare.
Furthermore, the group believes that a broader framework of engagement can be instrumental in countering efforts by China and Russia to undermine sovereignty and stability within the African continent.
They assert that the Abraham Accords can provide a new pathway to advance peace and stability in Africa, citing the successful relationships built during the Israel-Arab-Africa Summit. They encourage the United States and other Accord member countries to demonstrate the economic and political successes that the Accords have already yielded.
The signatories express interest in hearing more about the State Department’s plans on engaging with African nations through the Abraham Accords and request a written response outlining current and future efforts to implement a strategy that advances Israeli normalization into Africa.