US embassy in Jerusalem names courtyard after Jared Kushner

US embassy in Jerusalem names courtyard after Jared Kushner
2 min read
23 December, 2020
President Donald Trump's special advisor and son-in-law has spearheaded normalisation agreements between Israel and Arab states this year.
US Ambassador Friedman hailed Kushner's 'pursuit of peace' [Getty]
The US embassy in Jerusalem renamed a courtyard after Jared Kushner this week in honour of his work forging normalisation agreements between Israel and Arab states.

Kushner, both special advisor and son-in-law to outgoing President Donald Trump, attended the unveiling of a plaque in the embassy's courtyard on Monday.

The ceremony was held a day ahead of the first direct flight from Israel to Morocco, with Kushner and an Israeli delegation travelling to Rabat for an official signing of an agreement to normalise ties between the two states.

At the ceremony in Jerusalem, Ambassador David Friedman boasted of Kushner's "near-supernatural perseverance in the pursuit of peace".

"As they pass through this hallowed ground, they should know they are passing through a place of peace and a place that has brought peace to a troubled region," Friedman was quoted as saying by The Jerusalem Post.

As special advisor to President Trump, Kushner has spearheaded much of Washington's Israel-Palestine policy in recent years.

The Trump administration moved the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem in 2018, contravening an international norm that has seen states keep their embassies in Tel Aviv due to Palestinian and Israeli claims over Jerusalem.

A peace plan unveiled by the White House earlier this year was similarly criticised after the United States failed to consult the Palestinian leadership.

The so-called "Deal of the Century" gave Israel full control over contested Jerusalem and offered a greenlight for Israeli plans to annex large swathes of the occupied West Bank; it was roundly condemned by Palestinians and Muslim-majority nations.

This year, Kushner has been at the head of talks between Israel and numerous Arab states.

Those talks have so far yielded official normalisation agreements between Israel and Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Morocco. Sudan has nominally agreed to establish diplomatic relations but has not yet officially signed a deal.

Other Arab and Muslim-majority states, including Oman, Saudi Arabia and Indonesia, are also rumoured to be in talks with the US and Israel.

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