Senator Duckworth’s Efforts in Response to the Crisis in Israel and Gaza

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“Each day since October 7th, 2023, has brought painful, unimaginable suffering in Gaza and Israel. I have spoken out against the brutal terror attacks that Hamas conducted against Israel on October 7th which shattered the fragile ceasefire that was in place. I have also been vocal with my concerns about the viability of the Netanyahu government’s military strategy in Gaza and the atrocious humanitarian crisis that innocent civilians in Gaza, including thousands of precious children, have endured. The escalating humanitarian crisis and staggering loss of life in Gaza demands our urgent attention and concrete action by all involved parties to protect civilian lives and rapidly accelerate the flow of aid before widespread famine and disease claims even more innocent life in a war that has already seen the death of far too many civilians, many of them children.
“To those crying out for an end to this war, I want you to know that I hear you and share your goals. I strongly support the Biden Administration’s efforts restore a mutual ceasefire agreement, and I remain committed to doing what I can to provide relief and safety for innocent civilians suffering in Gaza. I will continue to advocate for the safe return of Hersh Goldberg-Polin and all hostages, and I will always advocate for a de-escalation of tensions in the region that ultimately brings about a two-state future that strengthens the safety of Israel, eliminates the threat posed by Hamas and ends the prolonged and continuing suffering of Palestinians. These have been my clear and consistent goals since October 7th, and they will remain at the front of my mind as I work to bring an end to this devastating war.” – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth

Since Hamas broke the ceasefire that existed prior to October 7th, 2023, Senator Duckworth has worked tirelessly to bring home hostages and alleviate suffering of innocent civilians in Gaza.

Following negotiations, Duckworth aided in the release of Illinoisans Judith and Natalie Raanan who were taken by Hamas terrorists during the October 7 attacks on Israel. Duckworth continued underscoring the need for all parties to remain laser-focused on the safe return of all hostages being held by Hamas, drastically improving the delivery of lifesaving aid, providing safe corridors for civilians and aid workers as well as humanitarian pauses in fighting, and on restoring essential services to Gaza. Duckworth has consistently called for bringing sustained and greater humanitarian relief into Gaza to minimizeThis link opens in new window or tab.This link opens in new window or tab.This link opens in new window or tab.This link opens in new window or tab.This link opens in new window or tab.This link opens in new window or tab. the suffering of innocent civilians. Her efforts include urging for the inclusion of full humanitarian assistance in any national security funding packages, calling for humanitarian cessations of hostilities, pushing for fuel to be allowed into Gaza for hospitals and water treatment and more.

Some additional details regarding Senator Duckworth’s many actions to bring hostages home, alleviate suffering in Gaza and end this war include:

  • Senator Duckworth issued a statement condemning Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s opposition to a two-state solution in the Middle East and reaffirming her position that establishing a Palestinian nation-state alongside Israel presents the only hope for long-term peace and stability in the region.  

  • Senator Duckworth hosted a briefing for several of her Senate colleagues with several doctors who had recently returned from a medical mission in Gaza so that the Senators could hear directly from the doctors on the state of the humanitarian crisis there and the urgent need for life-saving medical supplies, equipment and treatment to assist the innocent civilians who are suffering in Gaza.
  • Senator Duckworth and her staff have been in regular touch with leaders in the Muslim community since October 7, including hosting a meeting in her office with the Illinois Muslim Civic Coalition, including the Executive Director of the Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) – Chicago, to learn more about the deep impact this crisis is having on the Illinois Muslim community. 

  • Senator Duckworth helped introduce a bipartisan resolution with Senators Rosen, Senator Young, Booker and Rubio condemning Hamas for taking hostages, calling for their immediate release and calling for the US to lead a global campaign to demand the release of the hostages held captive by Hamas. A slightly amended version of this resolution was passed by the full Senate by unanimous consent.

  • Senator Duckworth convened a meeting with a number of her colleagues and a group of doctors who have worked on the ground in Gaza for years to hear directly about the difficulties doctors were facing providing care to those suffering in Gaza, as well as to discuss the broader medical response to the crisis in Gaza and other humanitarian efforts.

  • Senator Duckworth supported legislation that would maintain Congressional oversight of U.S. assistance to foreign militaries, including Israel.
  • Senator Duckworth called on the Administration to expand assistance to relatives of U.S. citizens stranded in Gaza and expedite Gaza residents’ applications for humanitarian parole in the United States.

  • Senator Duckworth worked to secure the release of two Illinoisans, Judith and Natalie Raanan, who had been held hostage by Hamas after the October 7th attacks.