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Byrne meets with Netanyahu, says Obama ‘must get off the sidelines and start leading’

Rep. Bradley Byrne (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right)
Rep. Bradley Byrne (left) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right)

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL1) is currently on his way back to the United States after spending the last ten days in the Middle East visiting various foreign leaders with House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-CA).

The Congressional Delegation (CODEL) made stops in Israel, Jordan, Egypt, and Morocco.

During the CODEL, Byrne held meetings with various foreign heads of state, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, King Abdullah II of Jordan, and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

In each country, the delegation also met with local defense officials and with the United States embassy staff regarding local defense and economic issues.

“This trip to the Middle East could not have been more timely given the numerous foreign policy challenges in the region right now,” Byrne said. “Each country had unique concerns relating to the rise of Islamic extremists, whether it be ISIS in Iraq, Hamas in Gaza, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, or Boko Haram in Africa. In order to combat these organizations and their horrible practices, we will need the support and help from Middle Eastern nations. Each country we visited expressed a willingness to work with the United States, but a clear strategy is lacking. Time is of the essence here. The President must get off the sidelines and start leading.”

Byrne also took the time to visit with American military personnel stationed in the Middle East.

“Visiting with some of our military personnel stationed overseas gave me an even deeper appreciation for our military families and the unique sacrifices they make on a daily basis,” he said. “It was an honor to talk directly with some of our servicemen about the challenges they face, and I look forward to using the valuable insight gained from this trip as I continue my work in Congress.”

This was the first time Byrne has participated in a CODEL since being sworn-in in January, his office said in a statement Friday.

Follow Cliff on Twitter @Cliff_Sims

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