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Senators Lankford, Casey Call for Support of Organizations Providing Syrian Humanitarian Aid

WASHINGTON, DC – Senators James Lankford (R-OK) and Bob Casey (D-PA) today introduced a resolution to affirm the work of Operation Good Neighbor, a partnership of the Israeli government, US NGO’s, including faith-based organizations, and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to provide humanitarian relief to Syrians. Operation Good Neighbor has helped to provide secure and safe access for NGOs throughout southern Syria. The bicameral, bipartisan resolution affirms the unique collaboration across government agencies, military personnel, and NGO’s to ensure safety for refugees across the region. Representatives Brian Mast (R-FL) and Brad Sherman (D-CA) introduced a companion resolution in the House of Representatives. 

“After years of continued conflict in Syria, more than six million Syrians still live as refugees within their own country,” said Lankford. “This unique partnership between the Israel Defense Forces and US nongovernmental organizations helped to provide aid to Syrians in their home communities so other countries aren’t burdened with refugee populations spilling out of the conflict. The Syrian dictator’s brutality stands in stark contrast to the compassion and generosity of Israel and many American organizations serving the people of Syria.”

“Operation Good Neighbor is a testament to how institutions come together in times of crises to provide critical humanitarian support to populations in need,” said Casey. “As Bashar al-Assad continues his reign of terror over the Syrian people, let Operation Good Neighbor serve as a reminder of the human impact of war and what can be achieved when governmental and non-governmental organizations to come together to support and help rebuild communities decimated by war.”

Lankford traveled to Israel and Lebanon in February to discuss economic development and the important regional partnerships the US has in the Middle East. During the trip to Lebanon, he met with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) leadership in Zahle in the Beqaa Valley where he met with families in a Syrian refugee camp. 

Lankford is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs.