Text: S.Con.Res.113 — 109th Congress (2005-2006)All Information (Except Text)

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Engrossed in Senate (08/01/2006)

 
[Congressional Bills 109th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[S. Con. Res. 113 Engrossed in Senate (ES)]


109th CONGRESS
  2d Session
S. CON. RES. 113

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Whereas international humanitarian law is, quintessentially, about principle, 
        establishing standards of conduct that can not be breached under any 
        circumstance, or for any calculation of political efficacy or utility;
Whereas the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is a worldwide 
        institution in which all national Red Cross and Red Crescent societies 
        have equal status, whose mission is to prevent and alleviate human 
        suffering wherever it may be found, without discrimination;
Whereas the Magen David Adom (Red Shield of David) Society is the national 
        humanitarian society in Israel and has performed heroically, aiding all 
        in need of assistance, on a purely humanitarian basis, without bias, 
        even those responsible for acts of horrific violence against Israeli 
        civilians;
Whereas since 1949, the Magen David Adom Society has been refused admission into 
        the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and has been 
        relegated to observer status without a vote because it has used the Red 
        Shield of David, the only such national organization denied membership 
        in the Movement;
Whereas the red cross symbol was intended as the visible expression of the 
        neutral status enjoyed by the medical services of the armed forces and 
        the protection thus conferred, and there is not, and has never been, any 
        implicit religious connection in the cross;
Whereas since its establishment in 1930, the Magen David Adom Society has worked 
        under its own symbol, the Red Star of David, as an expression of the 
        humanitarian values the Magen David Adom Society shares with the Red 
        Cross and Red Crescent societies;
Whereas Israel acceded to the Geneva Conventions in 1951 with a reservation 
        specifying their intent to continue to use the Magen David Adom;
Whereas international consultations among nations and national Red Cross 
        Societies ensued until 1999, when the International Committee of the Red 
        Cross formally called for adoption of a protocol to the Geneva 
        Conventions creating a third neutral symbol, allowing the use of either 
        the Red Cross, the Red Crescent, or the third neutral symbol, and 
        allowing for the third neutral symbol to be used in combination with 
        other national Red Cross Society symbols, including the Magen David 
        Adom;
Whereas a diplomatic conference to adopt this proposal into the Geneva 
        Conventions was scheduled for October 2000, but was prevented by the 
        outbreak of the second Palestinian intifada;
Whereas the United States, the American Red Cross, and the American Friends of 
        Magen David Adom have worked ceaselessly to resolve the issue of the 
        third neutral symbol and achieve full membership in the International 
        Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement for the Magen David Adom Society;
Whereas Congress has insisted that funds made available to the International 
        Committee of the Red Cross be contingent on a certification by the 
        Secretary of State confirming that the Magen David Adom Society is a 
        full participant in the activities of the International Red Cross and 
        Red Crescent Movement;
Whereas the American Red Cross has stood alone among all the national 
        humanitarian aid societies, and has withheld over $45,000,000 in dues to 
        the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies 
        to protest the exclusion of the Magen David Adom;
Whereas the Government of Switzerland, the depositary state for the Geneva 
        Conventions, convened a Diplomatic Conference of the states party to the 
        Geneva Conventions in December 2005 for the purpose of adopting a Third 
        Additional Protocol and rightly resisted efforts to block the broad 
        international consensus in favor of resolving the third neutral symbol 
        question;
Whereas the efforts by the United States and the American Red Cross at the 
        Diplomatic Conference in December 2005 were critical to achieving both 
        an overwhelming positive vote in favor of adopting the Third Additional 
        Protocol, as well as an extremely important memorandum of understanding 
        between the Magen David Adom and the Palestinian Red Crescent Society;
Whereas sustaining international support for the adoption of the third neutral 
        symbol against efforts to divert the conference into unrelated political 
        matters required extraordinary diplomatic efforts by the United States 
        and the American Red Cross;
Whereas the Third Additional Protocol adopted in Geneva in December 2005 
        established the new third neutral symbol, the ``red crystal'' that can 
        be used in conjunction with the Red Shield of David and cleared the way 
        for Israeli membership in the international movement;
Whereas in June 2006, the states party to the Geneva Conventions, the national 
        humanitarian aid societies, the International Federation of the Red 
        Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and the International Committee of the 
        Red Cross met in Geneva to adopt rules implementing the Third Additional 
        Protocol; and
Whereas at the June 2006 meeting in Geneva, the International Red Cross and Red 
        Crescent Movement accepted the Magen David Adom Society as a full 
        member: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), 
That Congress--
            (1) commends the Magen David Adom Society for its long and 
        distinguished record of providing humanitarian assistance to 
        all those in need of aid, even those responsible for heinous 
        atrocities against Israeli civilians;
            (2) congratulates the Magen David Adom Society, and the 
        Government and people of Israel, for securing full membership 
        in the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, 57 
        years past due;
            (3) thanks the President, the Secretary of State, and 
        United States diplomatic representatives for their tireless 
        pursuit and maintenance of the international consensus that 
        culminated in the recent acceptance of the Magen David Adom 
        Society as a full member in the International Red Cross and Red 
        Crescent Movement;
            (4) thanks the American Red Cross for its unwavering and 
        unyielding insistence within the International Red Cross and 
        Red Crescent Movement that the principles of international 
        humanitarian law could not be reconciled with continued 
        exclusion of the Magen David Adom Society;
            (5) thanks the Government of Switzerland and officials of 
        the International Committee of the Red Cross for helping to 
        prepare the necessary consensus and carrying to completion the 
        adoption of the Third Additional Protocol by the states party 
        to the Geneva Conventions and the rules for its implementation; 
        and
            (6) commends the President for--
                    (A) submitting the Third Additional Protocol to the 
                Senate for its advice and consent; and
                    (B) pending approval by the Senate, preparing for 
                congressional consideration and enactment of 
                legislation necessary to carry into effect the Third 
                Additional Protocol.

            Passed the Senate August 1, 2006.

            Attest:

                                                             Secretary.
109th CONGRESS

  2d Session

                            S. CON. RES. 113

_______________________________________________________________________

                         CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

  Congratulating the Magen David Adom Society in Israel for achieving 
    full membership in the International Red Cross and Red Crescent 
                   Movement, and for other purposes.