President Biden is facing growing bipartisan opposition to his plan to reopen a US consulate to the Palestinians in Jerusalem.
The consulate was closed in 2019 by former President Trump after the US Embassy in Israel was moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Biden has vowed to reopen the consulate to appease progressives.
The old consulate building is located on Gerson Agron Street, a few miles from the relocated US Embassy.
But pro-Israel lawmakers on both sides of the aisle reject that.
Israel must approve any new diplomatic facility. The United States has never opened a diplomatic office without permission from the host government, and doing so in Israel would create double standards,” warned Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) in a statement this week.
Accompanied by Representative Juan Vargas (D-Calif.), who also urged Biden to rein in the pump unless Israel gives the green light to a US consulate for Palestine on its soil.
For Israel, the issue is completely non-negotiable, and any agreement on a consulate is likely to undermine the country’s fragile ruling coalition, insiders say.
Personally, I am against reopening an American consulate in Jerusalem because it turns into debates about sovereignty. And Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid told the newspaper… Jerusalem is under Israeli sovereignty.
Lapid and others said that it would be more appropriate for the United States to open its Palestinian consulate in the West Bank and suggested Ramallah as a possible option.
For their part, the Palestinians rejected a little less than the US Consulate in Jerusalem.
Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs “East Jerusalem is an integral part of the occupied Palestinian territories and is the capital of the State of Palestine.” He said.
Israel has taken its opposition far beyond closed-door meetings with Biden and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, with the country’s top officials urging American Jews to revive the issue.
Earlier this month, Israeli Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked told attendees of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations meeting that it would “certainly be very useful and significant for American Jewish organizations to make public statements against the consulate,” according to the summary. From the statements of the President of the Zionist Organization of America Mort Klein.
Biden also faces overwhelming opposition from Republicans who have sided with Israel, saying that the US consulate for the Palestinians in the Israeli capital would also violate the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act – which Biden voted for when he was a US senator.
“President Biden must immediately abandon plans to open this consulate and reaffirm America’s clear support for an undivided Israeli capital in Jerusalem,” Representative Elise Stefanek, chair of the House Republican Convention, told the newspaper.
Stefanik, along with more than 100 fellow House of Representatives, filed a file on Wednesday complying with the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act of 2021 that would “ban the use of funds for any diplomatic facility in Jerusalem other than the US Embassy in Israel.”
Representatives from the State Department did not respond to a request for comment.
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