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House Passes New $38 Billion Aid Package For Israel

(JTA) – The U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure that would codify into law the $38 billion defense aid package for Israel over 10 years that was negotiated in the final days of the Obama administration.

The U.S.-Israel Security Assistance Authorization Act of 2018 approved Wednesday gives the defense package the imprimatur of Congress, which would keep any future president from reneging. The $38 billion deal negotiated in 2016 is the most generous ever to Israel.

The Senate passed the act in early August.

In the House, the measure was introduced by two Florida representatives — Ted Deutch, a Democrat, and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Republican.

AIPAC said in a statement that the legislation “seeks to ensure that Israel has the means to defend itself, by itself, against growing threats — most significantly Iran’s presence on its northern border.”

The act also expands a stockpile of weapons that the United States keeps in Israel, which may access the stockpile in wartime. It also enhances Israel’s qualitative military edge and urges space research cooperation between Israel and the United States.

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