SAN FRANCISCO, December 06, (THEWILL) – The UN Security Council will meet on Friday in emergency session to discuss the decision by US President Donald Trump to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the council’s leadership announced Wednesday.
The US President, on Wednesday, announced plans to relocate the US embassy to Jerusalem. A move criticized by Arab and European leaders.
“I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel,” Trump said during a press conference at the White House.
“After more than two decades of waivers, we are no closer to a lasting peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.”
Trump had while announcing his recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital, said his decision marked the beginning of a new approach to conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.
He recalled that in 1995, the US congress adopted the Jerusalem Embassy Act, urging “the federal government to relocate the American embassy to Jerusalem and to recognise that that city – and so importantly – is Israel’s capital.”
According to him, the act was also passed in congress by an overwhelming bipartisan majority and was reaffirmed by a unanimous vote of the senate only six months ago.
For over 20 years, every previous American president has exercised the law’s waiver, refusing to move the US embassy to Jerusalem or to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital city.
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has described the announcement as historic saying: “Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people for 3,000 years. It’s been the capital of Israel for nearly 70 years.
“It was here that our temples stood, our kings ruled, our prophets preached. Jerusalem has been the focus of our hopes, our dreams, our prayers for three millennia.
“From every corner of the earth, our people yearned to return to Jerusalem, to touch its golden stones, to walk its hallowed streets.
“So it’s rare to be able to speak of new and genuine milestones in the glorious history of this city. Yet today’s pronouncement by @POTUS Trump is such an occasion.
“We’re profoundly grateful for the President for his courageous and just decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to prepare for the opening of the US embassy here.
“I call on all countries that seek peace to join the United States in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and to move their embassies here.”
However, António Guterres, UN secretary-general, said there was no alternative to the two-state solution to the lingering conflict between Israel and Palestinian.
The UN chief said Jerusalem was an issue that must be resolved through direct negotiations between the parties.
“In this moment of great anxiety, I want to make it clear: there is no alternative to the two-state solution.
“There is no Plan B,” Guterres said while speaking to the press at UN headquarters in New York.
The UN chief stressed the need to realise the vision of two states living side-by-side in peace, security and mutual recognition, with Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and Palestine, and all final status issues resolved permanently through negotiations.
According to him, it is only through that realisation that the legitimate aspirations of both peoples would be achieved.