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Lawmakers Form Caucus on Israel

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Five state legislators have announced the formation of a Legislative Caucus on Israel to deal with Jewish-related foreign policy.

State Senators C. Louis Bassano (R. Union) and Edward O’Connor, Jr. (D. Hudson), Assemblyman George Otlowski (D. Middlesex) and Assembly woman Marie Muhler (R. Monmouth) are the co-chairpersons of the Caucus. State Senator Gerald Cardinale (R. Bergen) will chair the Task Force on Soviet Jewry.

The Legislative Caucus on Israel is a bipartisan” unicameral group and its membership is open to all members of the legislature, a spokesman said, noting that the group will seek to keep the legislature informed on crucial foreign policy issues that affect the American Jewish community and give them an organized means for participation.

Bassano, who visited Israel for two weeks last March, announced that he will introduce a resolution in the State Senate to request that Congress recognize Jerusalem as an undivided city and the capital of Israel, and move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

O’Connor will sponsor a Senate resolution which will urge Congress to show continued support for Israel as a strategic asset to the United States, with support for economic aid to Israel.

Otlowski will introduce a resolution memorializing Congress to reject arms sales to Arab nations that refuse to recognize the independence and sovereignty of Israel and that are not willing to join in peaceful negotiations with Israel.

The Caucus is affiliated with the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the National Conference on Soviet Jewry. David Wildstein of Livingston, who formerly directed the Congressional Caucus on Soviet Jewry in the House of Representatives, is the executive director of the Caucus.

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