DFA denies plan to transfer embassy to Jerusalem

28 December, 2017, 01:07 | Author: Genevieve Gibbs
  • The Dome of the Rock on the left and the Western Wall

"One of the most important topics [of the conversation] was the return of the embassy of Guatemala to Jerusalem".

The move to name the station after Trump comes just weeks after the president shocked the worldwide community and recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in a move that was widely praised by Israelis.

Israel's transportation minister is moving forward with a plan to expand Jerusalem's soon-to-open high speed rail line to the Western Wall, where he intends to name a future station after Donald Trump.

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And now, the Israeli government is reporting at least 10 other countries are preparing to make the same decision. The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state, and a longstanding global consensus holds that the fate of the city should be decided through direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. He proposed naming the station after Trump "for his courageous and historic decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital" earlier this month.

Last week, the Trump Administration threatened to withdraw United States financial aid to all those countries that voted against its decision to consider Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in an extraordinary assembly convened by the UN in NY.

After the vote in the UN, Morales affirmed that it is "of a Christian thought that, in addition to the political, we believe that Israel is our ally and we must support it, even though we were only nine in the whole world, we are with total certainty and conviction that it is the correct route", according to El Mundo. The resolution passed by the General Assembly declared the U.S. action on Jerusalem "null and void".

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"There's no reason why this train won't be built", said transport ministry spokesperson Avner Ovadia. Foreign embassies and most other diplomatic missions, including the U.S. Embassy, are based in Tel Aviv. Jerusalem has been the capital of Israel for 3,000 years from the time of King David.

Ikrema Sabri, a senior Muslim cleric in Jerusalem, denounced the planned train line extension, saying that Palestinians won't accept "any change or act in the occupied territories".

The plan announced Wednesday will see the train continuing from the entrance of the city and travelling through a three-kilometre tunnel-some 190 feet underground-to reach inside the Old City's walls. Giving the name of Trump to this project will not give it any legitimacy.

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Two sections - largely underground - of the line run through the West Bank, which is land the Palestinians envision for a future state, a position widely held as the worldwide consensus. "It would be just another implementation of the unacceptable decision of President Trump to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel".

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