Lawmakers Call on Biden To Expand Abraham Accords

The Sept. 2020 signing of the Abraham Accords (Photo by Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)
June 19, 2023

Republican and Democratic lawmakers are calling on the Biden administration to expand the Abraham Accords to counter Chinese and Russian influence in Africa.

In a letter to the State Department, 25 members of Congress, led by Rep. John James (R., Mich.), urged Secretary of State Antony Blinken to extend the Trump-era normalization agreement to more African countries, Fox News reported.

"We believe it is in our national security interest, as well as in the interests of sustainability, for the Biden administration to continue strengthening and expanding the accords and to further promote normalization with Israel on the African continent," the lawmakers wrote.

As President Joe Biden's clout in the Middle East weakens, lawmakers are questioning the Biden administration's lack of attempts to expand the groundbreaking agreement as China widens its influence in the region. One of the signers, Rep. Cory Mills (R., Fla.), said that Africa is "a key element" in China's Belt and Road Initiative, which U.S. officials warn is a military and economic security threat.

"We believe this broader framework of engagement can be vital to American efforts to combat endeavors by China and Russia to undermine sovereignty and stability within the African continent," the lawmakers wrote.

"Whenever we have been able to help support [our] allies in varying countries," Mills told Fox News, it "certainly brings about a stabilization element to this … and it builds less reliance on adversarial relations, whether that be Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, etc."

The State Department as of Monday morning has not responded to the June 1 letter, according to Mills.