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A bipartisan group of top US lawmakers have officially invited Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to deliver an address to Congress.

Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) sent the invitation on Friday, which included signatures from all four Congressional leaders: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY). The letter expressed solidarity with Israel in its fight against terrorism and extended the formal invitation for Netanyahu to speak at a joint meeting of Congress.

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According to some news outlets, Netanyahu will likely address Congress within the next eight weeks. This appearance would mark Netanyahu’s fourth address to Congress, following previous speeches in 2015, 2011, and 1996. The invitation comes after a period of delays linked to Schumer’s earlier critical remarks about Netanyahu, which called for new elections in Israel and provoked significant backlash.

Despite Schumer’s critical stance, he and his office maintained support for Netanyahu’s Congressional address. However, Netanyahu’s anticipated visit is likely to spark significant opposition from some liberal lawmakers who have criticized his handling of the Israel-Hamas war, particularly in light of rising humanitarian casualties in Gaza.

Recent developments have intensified these criticisms, including an International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor’s filing of arrest warrants against Netanyahu and other leaders, accusing them of war crimes. Progressive members of the House, such as Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (IL), have voiced her intention to boycott Netanyahu’s speech, citing his controversial actions during the war.


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