‘Beginning Of A FRESH Procedure’: President Trump Declares Jerusalem Israel’s Capital
“I have determined that it’s time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” President Trump said in an address from the White House on Wednesday afternoon. He also directed the State Department to “begin planning to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.”
Trump’s announcement fulfills a campaign promise even while threatening to unsettle volatile politics in the region. It’s a dramatic change from American foreign plan going back few decades, and such a approach will make the U.S. the just country with an embassy in Jerusalem.
Trump said previous presidents have got “didn’t deliver” on pledges to acknowledge Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. “I am delivering,” he stated, in a speech that started soon after 1 p.m. ET.
“Today we finally acknowledge the most obvious,” he said. “That is nothing pretty much than a recognition of reality.”
Jerusalem is claimed by while a capital metropolis by both Israelis and Palestinians, and determining the status of the city will be a central aspect of any possible peace contract.
For decades, world powers – like the U.S. – have refrained from choosing sides for the reason that dispute, locating their embassies in Tel Aviv and preventing any reference to Jerusalem as a part of Israel.
Trump says his announcement does indeed mean the U.S. is taking a position on any conceivable future peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians, or the “final status” of Jerusalem after such talks.
In 1995, Congress approved a law calling for the U.S. to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and for the embassy to become moved to Jerusalem. But every president since then has picked to waive that law, postponing implementation six a few months at a time.
As The Two-Way reported yesterday:
“Moving the embassy was one of Trump’s campaign promises as he appealed to pro-Israel voters, including various American evangelicals. “The White House insists the Jerusalem plan change will not lessen the probabilities for reaching peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Officials stated regional leaders contacted prior to the decision were committed to encouraging a relaxing solution. However the administration also took precautions. “The State Department issued warnings to diplomats in the region that protests could break out in the region following a change in plan on Jerusalem.”
The decision “will not sit well with various key players in the region,” as NPR’s Scott Neuman wrote this morning:
“Jordan’s King Abdullah reportedly told the president that the expected decision could have ‘dangerous repercussions on the balance and security of the region,’ according to a palace statement. “Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who spoke by telephone with Trump, warned of ‘the dangerous outcomes such a decision would have to the peace process also to the peace, security and balance of the region and of the environment,’ Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina stated in a statement, according to Al-Jazeera. “That was a sentiment echoed by Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who cautioned that it ‘would undermine the chances of peace in the Middle East.’ “In a fiery televised speech on Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned Trump by name that the approach constituted a ‘red collection’ for Muslims. ” ‘We could go so far as cutting diplomatic ties with Israel over the problem,’ Erdogan said.”
“There will of course come to be disagreement and dissent” over the announcement, Trump stated on Wednesday. But he needed peace between all celebrations.
Jerusalem is a divided city with a long and bloody record of conflict, NPR’s Greg Myre and Mark Katkov write: