Joe Biden says he will keep US embassy in Jerusalem if elected

Basic information
Date of placement

Former vice president opposes West Bank annexation endorsed by Trump administartion

World | The Independent

Joe Biden says he would keep Israel's US embassy in Jerusalem if elected, despite calling Donald Trump's controversial decision to move the office from Tel Aviv "short-sighted and frivolous" before the US engaged a peace process.

The likely Democratic nominee to face the president in November's general election claimed that moving the embassy to the holy city would impede efforts to strengthen peace efforts among Israel's government and Palestinian officials.

While a Delaware Senator, Mr Biden supported the congressional authorisation of the embassy's move in 1995, but the move was delayed as parties sought broader negotiations with leaders in the region.

Download the new Independent Premium app

Sharing the full story, not just the headlines

Download now

Speaking to members of a virtual fundraiser on Wednesday, the former vice president said: "Moving the embassy when we did without the conditions having been met was short-sighted and frivolous. It should have happened in the context of a larger deal to help us achieve important concessions for peace in the process."

Mr Biden said he supports a "two-state solution" though the president's push for the embassy to remain in Jerusalem aligns with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other right-wing and Israel hard-liners who have made Jewish and Christian claims to the region. Jerusalem is a crucial holy site for Christians, Jews and Muslims.

Watch more

The Biden campaign also announced that the candidate would support the embassy remaining in Jerusalem during a Tuesday conference call.

Mr Biden's foreign policy advisor Antony Blinken said that "revisiting that question does not make a lot of sense, either practically or for that matter politically" and that "the real question going forward is what can be done to try to revive and then ultimately advance the prospects of two states for two people."

The former vice president opposes the annexation of the occupied West Bank.

Earlier this year, the Trump administration broke from decades of US foreign policy to help Israel carve out a fractured Palestinian state in Gaza and the West Bank and would allow Israel to annexe the Jordan Valley and all occupied territory, including areas containing settlements that are illegal under international law.

Armed with US support and a large government coalition, the Israeli government will begin that process on 1 July.

  • Joe Biden says he will keep US embassy in Jerusalem if elected photo

Dislike 0
Like 0
Someone is typing...

News list

I agree and close
x We use cookies to measure visitor statistics, personalize ads and customize the functionality of the site. You agree to this by using the website