Griffin Cosponsors Resolution Urging Protection of Iraqi Jewish Archives

WASHINGTON – Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement regarding the introduction of H.Res. 505, a bipartisan resolution “strongly recommending that the United States renegotiate the return of the Iraqi Jewish Archive to Iraq”:

“I am proud to cosponsor this resolution urging the protection of the Iraqi Jewish Archives, a collection of artifacts that rightfully belong to this persecuted community. The State Department should renegotiate the archives’ return to Iraq so that descendants and scholars will be able to access it for years to come.”

Rep. Griffin is a cosponsor of H.Res. 505, which was introduced by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27) and Rep. Steve Israel (NY-03). The Senate version of the legislation, S.Res. 333, passed by unanimous consent on February 6, 2014.

On November 13, 2013, Rep. Griffin joined a bipartisan group of Members of Congress in sending a letter [PDF] to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, expressing “concern regarding the return of a collection of restored Jewish communal and religious items by the United States Government to the Government of Iraq.” The letter states that “[t]he Government of Iraq has no legitimate claim to these artifacts” and urges “the Department of State to facilitate the return of these items to their rightful owners or their descendants, and not to the Government of Iraq.”