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Jewish refugees from Arab lands speak out at House caucus

A congressional caucus heard testimony from Jewish refugees from Arab lands in support of legislation that calls on any peace Middle East peace deal to take into account their expulsion.

Non-binding resolutions in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate address the displacement of Jews, Christians and other minority groups living in Arab dominated countries and instruct the president to address all refugees of the Middle East- not just Palestinians- at future international forums.

Thursday’s Human Rights Caucus forum featured Reps. Tom Lantos (D-Calif.), Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.), Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.).

Hastings, who has traveled extensively in the Middle East, including to Israel, pointed out that the U.N. General Assembly since 1947 “has adopted 681 resolutions on the Middle East conflict, including 101 resolutions on Palestinian efugees. During that same time period, there were no U.N. resolutions, nor any recognition or assistance from the international community for Jewish and other refugees from Arab countries.”

Following a screening of “The Forgotten Refugees,” Regina Bublil Waldman, formerly of Libya, Sabin Dazin, of Algerian and Moroccan descent and Sir Charles Dahan formerly of Morocco gave testimony to their experiences being Jewish refugees.

Stanley Urman, executive director of Justice for Jews from Arab Countries and Professor Henry Green both spoke of the 2,600 year history of Jews in the Middle East and the expulsion of nearly 900,000 Jews from Arab countries after the formation of Israel.

Dr. Irwin Cotler, former Justice Minister and Attorney General of Canada, was scheduled to speak but was unable to due to flight delays.

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