Dec. 18, 2017
Recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s Capital Is Good for Peace. Britain Should Do So Too – Israeli Ambassador to the UK Mark Regev (Telegraph-UK)
- The Oxford English Dictionary defines a “capital” as “the city or town that functions as the seat of government and administrative center of a country.” Jerusalem meets this definition exactly as the base for Israel’s executive, legislative and judiciary branches since 1949.
- It is an accepted norm in international relations that every sovereign state has the right to decide its own capital city. Only in the case of Israel has this norm not been applied.
- The White House decision helps to advance peace by eroding the dangerous fantasy that the Jews can somehow be wrested from Jerusalem, and that we have neither a valid claim to the city, nor a right to a capital there. This type of extremist thinking renders peacemaking all but impossible.
- Whenever the international community has put forward comprehensive Israeli-Palestinian peace plans over the past 20 years, they have consistently acknowledged Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
- In Jerusalem today, religious freedom is strongly upheld: each faith community autonomously administers its own holy places. In a region where in recent years many religious sites have been desecrated or destroyed, contemporary Jerusalem stands out as a beacon of tolerance and freedom.
- Other countries, including the United Kingdom, should follow the U.S. in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moving their embassies there. Such a move would be both just and good for peace.