Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) released the following statement marking Israel’s Independence Day, Yom Ha’atzmaut:

“Mazel tov to the State of Israel on her 68th anniversary. Our shared values of democracy, justice and religious freedom forged a bond between our two nations even before Israel’s independence. I am proud that the United States was the first nation to recognize the government of Israel in 1948. Our mutual commitment to defending and fighting for democratic values in the years since Israel’s creation has made our relationship an especially strong and enduring one.

“Unfortunately, the Jewish Democratic State is plagued by instability as she continues to face hostile neighbors and non-state actors who seek to destroy her. In the face of ongoing threats, the United States will continue to stand by our ally Israel.

“As a member of the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations subcommittee, I have and will continue to use my voice and my vote to support robust funding for strategic commitments to Israel’s safety and security. More personally, as the first Jewish woman to represent Florida in Congress, my connection to Israel runs deeply. Israel is, and will always remain, the historical homeland of the Jewish people. We will stand by her and continue to celebrate our shared commitments to justice and human rights.

“Again, I wish the people of Israel a joyous Independence Day – and may she continue to go from strength to strength.”