JCRC responds to Trump recognition of Jerusalem

The Jewish Community Relations Council issued the following Wednesday in response to President Donald Trump’s
decision to recognize Jerusalem, as the capital of Israel:
This afternoon, President Donald Trump announced that the United States recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel, and announced plans to move the U.S. Embassy there from its present location in Tel Aviv.
While these pronouncements have been enshrined in U.S. law for over 20 years, their implementation has been postponed by every president…until today.
The Palestinians also claim Jerusalem as the capitol of a future Palestinian state. In order to maintain the status quo, most countries around the world have not recognized Jewish sovereignty over Jerusalem, even West Jerusalem, which is indisputably going to be a part of Israel in any future peace deal with the Palestinians. That is why today’s announcement was so newsworthy.
There is a clear consensus in our community for the concept that Jerusalem absolutely should be recognized as the capital of Israel and that all embassies should be relocated there. Israel is the only country in the world where the vast majority of embassies are not located in its capitol, and we are pleased with the president’s motivation to formally recognize a fact that already exists.
We are also heartened by his calls for a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, that the final borders of Jerusalem will be determined through direct negotiations (thus leaving the door open for a future Palestinian presence there) and that the status quo at the holy sites should be maintained. We support a peaceful resolution to the conflict based on the “two states for two peoples” formula, and hope for an immediate return to the negotiating table.
In many ways, Jerusalem is the most contentious issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and we are concerned about world reaction to the president’s statement. The Palestinian Authority has called for three days of rage, Turkey has threatened to cut off diplomatic relations with Israel and other groups in the Middle East are unfortunately calling for violence in response. We hope cooler heads prevail on all sides, that a return to direct negotiations to resolve the conflict is in the offing, and that peace can be achieved at last.

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