Israel PM refuses reopening of US Palestinian consulate

Israeli PM Bennett repeats opposition to reopening US Palestinian consulate in Jerusalem
2 min read
28 December, 2021
Israel's prime minister has again voiced opposition to reopening a US consulate for Palestinians in Jerusalem
Bennett and other Israeli officials have repeatedly voiced their strong opposition to the reopening of the consulate [Getty- archive]

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett reiterated on Monday his opposition to reopening the US consulate used to serve Palestinians in Jerusalem.

"The government under my leadership has repeatedly clarified its position that there is no place for a Palestinian consulate in Jerusalem," Bennett said during a meeting of the Knesset Monday night.

"Jerusalem is the capital of one state, the State of Israel, period."

Israel considers the whole of Jerusalem as part of its "individable capital", while Palestinians view East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state.

Israel has illegally occupied East Jerusalem, along with the West Bank, since 1967.

Under former President Donald Trump, Washington closed its Jerusalem consulate and placed its staff within the US embassy to Israel, which it moved to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv in 2018.

Its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital outraged Palestinians and broke with international consensus on the issue.

The consulate served Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Seeking to repair ties with the Palestinians, President Joe Biden has vowed to reopen the consulate, with no date given. Israel - the US’ number one ally in the region - has repeatedly refused this.

Last month, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid proposed the consulate be opened in the West Bank instead.