Trump declaration on Jerusalem raises concerns outside Middle East

Trump declaration on Jerusalem raises concerns outside Middle East
From CBC - December 6, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital on Wednesday, fulfilling a campaign promise but likely scuttling any possibility of brokering a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians.

While the process of moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is expected to take years, and even though U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson cautioned on Wednesday to "listen carefully to the entirety of the speech" Trump was planning, there was widespread concern and condemnation outside the Middle East in response to the American declaration.


British Prime Minister Theresa May said she intended to speak to Trump about the status of Jerusalem, which she said should be determined as part of a settlement between Israel and the Palestinians.

May said the ancient city should ultimately be shared between Israel and a future Palestinian state. She said there should be a sovereign and viable Palestinian state as part of a two-state solution.

"The status of Jerusalem should be determined in a negotiated settlement between the Israelis and the Palestinians," said May. "Jerusalem should ultimately form a shared capital between the Israeli and Palestinians."

Earlier, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Boris Johnson says the decision clearly "makes it more important than ever that the long-awaited American proposals on the Middle East peace process are now brought forward."

Johnson said Britain had no plans to move its embassy.


China has expressed concerns over "possible aggravation of regional tensions" in response to the expected U.S. announcement.

Geng Shuang, a spokesperson forthe Chinese Foreign Ministry, said Wednesday thatChina would monitor developments on the issue.

Shuang said the "issue of Jerusalem's status is complicated and sensitive" and "all sides should focus on regional peace and tranquility, act with caution, and avoid sabotaging the foundation for the settlement of Palestinian issues and triggering new confrontation in the region."

China has provided the Palestinians with financial and technical aid, but it also has built stronger ties with Israel, providing a large market for Israeli technology.

China says it views both Israel and the Palestinians as "important partners" in its "One Belt, One Road" initiative, a mammoth Chinese-funded push to develop transport routes including ports, railways and roads to expand trade in a vast arc of countries across Asia, Africa and Europe.


Germany's foreign minister is warning that any U.S. move to recognize Jerusalem as the capital would be dangerous and could deepen the Middle East conflict.

Sigmar Gabriel said Tuesday that "recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel does not calm a conflict, rather it fuels it even more," and that such a move "would be a very dangerous development."

Gabriel told reporters at NATO headquarters in Brussels that "it's in everyone's interest that this does not happen."

Gabriel said Germany and its European Union partners continue to support a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians.






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