US President Joe Biden’s 2020 campaign promise to reopen the US consulate in East Jerusalem that was closed down during the former US President Donald Trump era. Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett opposes the move reports Channel 12 correspondent Amit Segal. The East Jerusalem consulate, which was initially established to serve the ‘Palestinian’ population exclusively, would erase Trump’s historic accomplishment of recognizing a united Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
A consulate in East Jerusalem would relations between Washington and Jerusalem eight years back to the Obama era when Washington recognized Tel Aviv, not Jerusalem, as Israel’s capital.
After Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Biden now needs Israel’s consent to reopen the consulate. But according to the report, Bennett also would rather avoid embarrassing Biden. The issue is currently under discussion between the two parties.
Upon hearing about the development, chairman of the Religious Zionist party, Bezalel Smotrich wrote on Twitter: “As part of Biden’s efforts to erase Trump’s accomplishments, Biden is moving forward with a plan to reopen the American consulate for Palestinians in Jerusalem and therefore, nullifying the recognition of a united Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”
Smotrich believes that Bennett will agree to Biden’s aims adding: “As of now, the leftist government of Bennett-Lapid-Abbas is going with the flow and is dividing Jerusalem.”
Clear signs of a shift in US attitudes toward the status of Jerusalem were reported on Tuesday by Israel365 News when a dual citizen who was born in the Judean town of Efrat had their place of birth on their passport changed to ‘West Bank’ upon renewing their passport.