Israel fast-tracks work for new US embassy

Trump decision to move embassy to occupied Jerusalem drew criticism from around the world

Occupied Jerusalem: The Israeli regime has expedited construction permits to enable temporary quarters for the US


Embassy to open in occupied Jerusalem as planned in May, the Finance Ministry said on Tuesday.

US President Donald Trump in December broke with other world powers by recognising occupied Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and announcing the US Embassy would be moved there from Tel Aviv.

Trump’s reversal of decades of US and broad international policy was welcomed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “historic decision”. But it drew criticism from around the world and outraged Palestinians, who want a capital for their own future state in eastern parts of the city.

The regime in Tel Aviv said the embassy will be opened on May 14, the 70th anniversary of its founding. A US official said it would be located at a provisional site in occupied Jerusalem that now houses a US consular section.

Building a permanent embassy could take several years.

Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon said in a statement that he would empower the occupied Jerusalem municipality to waive the permits that would have been required for a wall and an escape route at the interim site.

Palestinian leaders said Washington’s decision meant it was no longer an honest broker in efforts to revive peace talks, which collapsed in 2014.

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