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Trump’s Decision on the Status of Jerusalem: What Are the Main Implications?

Jerusalem Post

Despite the strong opposition, the US President Donald Trump made a decision to recognize Jerusalem as a capital of Israel. Before trying to answer the question what will be the implications of such a decision, it is important to make a brief reference what the developments on the status of Jerusalem have been so far in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

Both Jews and Israelis consider Jerusalem their historical and spiritual capital. In 1947 after British withdrawal, the UN General Assembly voted to partition the territory into Arab and Jewish states make Jerusalem a corpus separatum - or "separated body" - with special international status. However, following the 1967 war, Israel captured East Jerusalem from Jordan, a move, which is considered illegal by the United Nations. In 1980, Israel’s Knesset passed the "Basic Law: Jerusalem, Capital of Israel," which was not recognized by any other country, including the United States.

In 1995, the US Congress passed a law that required the embassy be transferred to Jerusalem, but all presidents since Bill Clinton have repeatedly signed a six-month waiver to override the implementation of the law, Al Jazeera reports.  

The previous US administrations, starting from Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, and followed by Barack Obama publicly supported the creation of the Palestinian state based on the two-state solution (an independent State of Palestine alongside the State of Israel), which was put forward in the 2003 Road map for peace. The Road map was suggested by the Quartet on the Middle East the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations and was originally drafted by the U.S. Foreign Service Officer Donald Blome. According to the plan, the status of the Jerusalem should have been decided in the third phase of the negotiations along with the issues of refugees and settlements; however the process reached a deadlock in the first stage.

So what are the main implications of Trump’s such a decision on the status of Jerusalem.

  • Trump has once more proved that it can go against the traditional policies previously conducted both by Democrats as well as Republicans,
  • It once more proved the power of lobbing in foreign relations,
  • It will undermine the US role as an impartial mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,
  • It can potentially become a cause of further tension between Arabs and Jews,
  • The decision will become another reason for misunderstanding between the US European allies and several countries of the Arab world,
  • The decision will also become another reason for tension between the US and its NATO ally Turkey, which has already threatened to break diplomatic ties with Israel.

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