Joe Biden’s administration should not to open a U.S. diplomatic mission for Palestinians in Jerusalem, Israeli authorities said on Oct. 24.
The Israeli government criticized President Biden’s plan to set up a foreign mission specifically for Palestinians in the Holy City.
“I have good reason to think this will not happen,” Deputy Foreign Minister Idan Roll said according to Reuters. “The Americans understand the political complexity. We have very good relations … [and] we do not believe in surprising them–I do not think they will try to surprise us.”
Such a diplomatic act arguably contradicts Israel’s position that all of Jerusalem belongs the same country. It could weaken nationalist Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s political position and undermine his bipartisan government.
It would also violate Israeli sovereignty and rules from the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations. Article 4 states, “A consular post may be established in the territory of the receiving state only with that state’s consent” according to Breitbart.
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid suggested Israel could give consent. However, Prime Minister Bennett refused to endorse any U.S. action that divides Jerusalem.
The Biden administration is still proceeding with its plan. The president claims he is delivering on his 2020 election promise to reopen the U.S. consulate in “East Jerusalem.”
“Israel is already reportedly considering responses, including cutting off utilities to the building, imposing sanctions against the United States, and other options that Israeli policymakers will not discuss publicly,” Breitbart in-house counsel Joel Pollak said according to the publication.
Armed conflict between Israel and Palestine has escalated since the Hamas terrorist group seized Gaza during a 2007 coup that ousted Palestinian authorities.
Israel has been unable to eliminate Hamas despite invading Gaza in 2008 and 2009.
In subsequent wars, Israel refrained from overthrowing Hamas out of concern this might destabilize the region or let Islamic State take over.
Israel Defense Forces (IDF) sent ground troops into Gaza during May to root out Palestinian terrorists who reportedly fired nearly 2,000 rockets at Israeli civilians.
IDF bombed 700 locations including Hamas’s central bank. At least 60 terrorists were killed in the attack and 109 Palestinians died according to the Gaza Ministry of Health. This figure does not distinguish between those killed by Israeli airstrikes and Hamas rockets.