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BURIED IN BUSH BUDGET PROPOSAL: PROVISION TO UNDERMINE ARAB BOYCOTT LAW

BURIED IN BUSH BUDGET PROPOSAL: PROVISION TO UNDERMINE ARAB BOYCOTT LAW
 NEW YORK, Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- In a statement released today, AJCongress Associate Executive Director Phil Baum pointed out that the Bush Administration buried a provision in its recently announced budget proposal that would "undo the work of the U.S. Congress in its last session prohibiting American firms from receiving government contracts if they collaborate with the Arab Boycott." On page 717 of the Bush Administration's budget proposal, released last week, the State Department budget request details two "sections proposed for deletion" -- a prohibition on contracts with firms complying with Arab League Boycott of Israel or discriminating on the basis of religion, and a prohibition on issuance of passports for travel to Israel only.
 AJCongress has actively sought anti-boycott legislation, and Baum expressed disappointment "that the Administration should seek to do surreptitiously that which would be doomed were it to have been attempted through open and fair discussion."
 The full text of Baum's statement follows:
 By burying its recommendations deep in the dense type of the more than one thousand page budget proposal for Fiscal Year 1993, the Bush Administration has been trying covertly to undo the work of the U.S. Congress in its last session prohibiting American firms from receiving government contracts if they
collaborate with the Arab Boycott. In a brief few lines, at its 717th page, the budget proposal slips in a provision which would annul these newly adopted requirements.
 By this same device, the Administration has also sought to reverse new legislation which would prohibit the issuance of passports for travel to Israel
only. This legislation was adopted as a means of precluding cooperation with the refusal of some Arab states to deny entry to American citizens whose passports contain Israeli entry stamps.
 Obviously, it was the intention of the authors of this strategy to undo by stealth those advances in the fight against the Arab boycott which were won during open Congressional debate. It is appalling that the Administration should seek to do surreptitiously that which would be doomed were it to have been attempted through open and fair discussion.
 It has long been the policy of the U.S government to oppose any impact of the Arab boycott on American trade practices. The recommendations hidden in the
new budget proposal run in exactly the opposite direction. They amount to a capitulation to the Arab boycott at precisely the moment when a peace process is underway, one of whose objectives is to end the scourge of boycott and its distorting and adverse impact upon American business.
 -0- 2/3/92
 /CONTACT: Andrea Binder, 212-360-1541, or Mark J. Pelavin, 202-332-4001 both of American Jewish Congress/ CO: American Jewish Congress ST: IN: SU: SH -- NY079 -- 6254 02/03/92 14:21 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 3, 1992
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